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NCI Helping to Empower a New Generation of Environmentalists September/October 2009
Bringing together schoolchildren to learn about the importance
of Peru’s mountain ecosystems
In the Piura region of northeastern Peru, NCI’s environmental education department together with the Andean Paramo Project organized an exciting 2-day event – Mountain Ecosystems 2009 – that brought together schoolchildren between the ages of 10 and 12 from eight schools to learn about the importance of the region’s mountain ecosystems. The event included a host of interactive activities designed to teach the children about the region’s uniqueness and the importance of sustainably coexisting with nature. During the event, the children designed a map showing the paramos, cloud forests, dry forests and coastal areas of the region, followed by a discussion about how water resources here tie all the areas and communities together. The children also participated in a radio program that explained the environmental projects that are taking place in their schools such as medicinal plant nurseries, reforestation efforts and product development of native resources. Other activities included a fair where children could participate in a number of games related to the region’s biodiversity, a performance by a storyteller who spoke to children about the spectacled bears and the mountain tapirs of the region, and a showing of the movie Ferngully: The Last Rainforest, which addresses the importance of forest conservation. During the event, teachers met separately to discuss the most effective ways to integrate further environmental education materials into the schools’ curriculums.