Claire Lannoye-Hall is a Curator of Education for the Detroit Zoological Society.
The ecological health of the world’s tropical rainforests are vital to the balance of the global environment. Rainforests have been called the lungs of the earth, cleaning the air we breathe. The area is rich in biodiversity and culture, and supporting the people who know the rainforest best from living there for generations places them in an unparalleled position to protect the natural resources that they depend on for their way of life. By empowering these communities to live sustainably amongst these resources, they become protectors of this essential region.
One of the keys to creating change in the world is access to education and current information. The Detroit Zoological Society has long been a partner in the Amazon Rainforest Adopt-A-School Program to provide school supplies and support to people living in the rural areas of Peru to strengthen education. With this education comes empowerment and responsibility to live sustainably in this vital region.
I and another member of our education department have returned to Peru this spring to deliver school supplies to more than 3,000 children and teachers. Each child will receive several notebooks, pens, pencils, a folder, ruler and pencil sharpener. Each school receives a single set of books and basic school supplies like glue, construction paper and markers, and physical education materials like soccer balls and volleyballs.
The school supplies are purchased in Peru with money donated by individuals and organizations from around the world. A group of about 20 people travel with us to deliver all the supplies in a single week. These generous individuals pay their travel costs and make a donation to the program that helps support operational costs.
The program was started almost 25 years ago by Amazon Explorama Lodges and CONAPAC, a Peruvian NGO. The DZS has been an integral partner since 1999.
To follow our daily diary of our trips to Peru, visit: adoptaschool.edublogs.org
– Claire Lannoye Hall