Dominican Students Conquer New Heights on Mountain Hike to Pico Duarte
Santo Domingo, February 8, 2014Tweet
The 9th Educational Expedition to Pico Duarte, an initiative of Global Foundation for Democracy and Development’s DR Environmental Film Festival (DREFF) and the Siempre Mas Foundation, concluded successfully, this time with 75 students and staff members. For the ninth time since the program’s inception in 2012, selected student endured the thrill of a four day climb to conquer the tallest peak in the Antilles, Pico Duarte. The hike aims to help turn youth into protectors of the environment whilst simultaneously learning the value of personal effort, teamwork, companionship and discipline. The experience also hopes to encourage the necessary skill-sets to overcome obstacles and achieve personal goals -- now, and in the future.
Under the safe and practical guidance of staff and volunteers from the Siempre Mas Foundation, students hailing from the St. Jude Foundation in Santo Domingo, the Santa Ana Home in San Pedro de Macoris and from the Ann & Ted Kheel Polytechnic School in Verón had the opportunity to learn more about their natural heritage and explore their innermost connection to the environment.
During the trek, the adventurous group received 11 educational lectures from environmental conservation experts at the Armando Bermudez National Park. The talks raised awareness on topics such as; the geography of the Cordillera Mountain Range, its flora and fauna, climate, environmental conservation, forest fires, and re-forestation, among other relevant issues.
The expedition was made possible thanks to support of the DR Environmental Film Festival which sponsors a yearly expedition, provides the necessary equipment for the realization of additional excursions, and organizes activities throughout the year meant to reunite participants and reinforce best practices and values gleaned during the trip.
Since the 1st Education expedition took place in March of 2012, more than 400 students from around the country have had the opportunity to participate in this life-changing adventure. The Educational Expeditions to Pico Duarte reflect DREFF’s overall mission to interact with leading figures in the environmental community and, by encouraging the participation of young students, foster change at the grassroots level.
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