GFDD’s ReCrearte program celebrates its most successful month to date
Santo Domingo, April 18, 2014Tweet
In 2013, GFDD launched the ReCrearte Program with the goal of becoming the Dominican Republic’s leading program in artistic creation of useful objects through recycled materials.
Since the program’s inception, GFDD has been able to engage individuals across the country to rethink their conception of trash, raising environmental awareness while promoting the sustainable use of natural resources through the 3'Rs of proper solid waste disposal: reduce, reuse and recycle. By its first year, the program carried out over 25 workshops across the county in Santo Domingo, Baní, Puerto Plata, and Samaná, and graduated 24 students who are now serving as leaders and multipliers in their own communities, passing on their knowledge of recycled art and generating income through the sale of their artwork.
Though the program initially set a target of 30 workshops per year, demand for ReCrearte workshops has increased dramatically across the country. Just this past month the program celebrated a record 18 workshops in March alone! Not only have the program advances been quantitative but also qualitative, as ReCrearte has been successful in engaging all levels of society, empowering many marginalized groups such as disabled youth, the elderly and female inmates, providing them with a sense of purpose and self-worth. The program has also evolved to offer community and grassroots organizations not one, but a series a workshops meant to train individuals how to generate their own craft from waste, providing an alternative source of income for many families.
A total of 23 workshops have been carried out since March 2014, including:
- Eleven workshops in Capotillo, Boca Chica, Villa Duarte, Santiago and Haina, carried out through the Progressing with Solidarity Program, at their Community Technology Centers.. The Capotillo sessions were directed at disabled youth, who worked mainly with discarded newspapers and wood, using the exercise for tactile sensory stimulation. The sessions at Villa Duarte, Boca Chica and Haina were directed at the elderly, who worked with recycled fabric to make hair accessories inspired by flowers and the arrival of spring.
- Five workshops at Baní’s Women’s Correctional and Rehabilitation Center, directed at female inmates, who have created accessories and purses with reused fabric and plastic.
- Two workshops at the Perello Cultural Center in Baní, with several more scheduled this month. A group of 29 participants, including teens and adults, are working with driftwood collected from the coastal area.
- Three workshops at the Mirador Cultural Center in Santo Domingo. The workshops were directed at children and adolescents under the theme “My Planet.” Working mainly with driftwood, used fabric and used plastic bags, students created a wide array of accessories.
- For the first time ReCrearte joined forces with Peace Corps, participating in their Green Brigade Conferences at Rancho Lulu and Rancho Campeche, located in San Pedro de Macorís and San Cristobal, respectively. Over 60 young leaders, from various provinces in the region along with Peace Corps volunteers participated in the workshops, which dealt with the theme of leading by example, and highlighted ways individuals could care for and prevent environmental pollution.
The ReCrearte Program (www.r3crearte.org) is an initiative of GFDD/FUNGLODE that was launched following the success of Bertha Santana’s Recycled Art workshop during the second edition of the Dominican Republic Environmental Film Festival (DREFF) in 2012. The main objectives of the program are to raise awareness for environmental issues among Dominicans, while at the same time enhancing the protection of the planet and its natural resources through the promotion of the three golden rules of proper waste management: reduce, reuse and recycle. Via this system of proper waste management, the program seeks to empower women, youth and children by launching a unique recycling scheme that can become a source of income and entrepreneurship for individuals and communities. Each session begins with an introductory 30 minute lecture, followed by an arts and craft project using recycled materials found in the local community.
The long term goal of the initiative is to spur a new generation of artists that can serve as multipliers and waste management leaders in their own communities.
To find out more about the ReCrearte program and its activities, please visit www.r3crearte.org.
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