Third Ecological Children and Youth Fair “Guardians of Nature”
By Alexa Fullerton and Sylvia van Dijk
PEASMA (Environmental Education Program San Miguel de Allende) has been working for the past eight years in the public schools in the municipality. Environmental education is a process of cultural change in which habits and beliefs are redirected according to new information available, which is then made accessible to children and their families in a meaningful way.
Children and Youth Fair “Guardians of Nature”
Mon, Dec 15, 10am-1pm
The experiences of the program in San Miguel de Allende have spread, thanks to the support from the Ecology Institute of the State of Guanajuato to many schools of other municipalities. Interestingly, PEASMA has piloted projects in town first to see what does and does not work. PEASMA has additionally trained 2,200 teachers throughout the state, reaching covers more than 7,000 students annually; total beneficiaries are 40,000 children. Thanks to the donation of 56,000 pesos last spring by 100 Women Who Care, our manual has been updated with new information and put into a DVD format including new areas such as dealing with violence (verbal, physical, and sexual).
For the last four years, PEASMA has been encouraging schools to be more autonomous in sustaining good environmental practices throughout the school year. Twenty-five local schools have earned the title “Amigos de la Naturaleza” (friends of nature.) They are evaluated every year by the PEASMA team. This becomes a point of pride for the children and the school and a certificate is issued annually after inspection.
This program has been possible thanks to many local donors —The Garden Club, San Miguel Educational Foundation, Save the Laja, Fundación Rincón, and the Bancomer Foundation. Thank you all for a long term and sustained effort that is making San Miguel de Allende a cleaner and more sustainable community.
This program organizes the annual Ecological Children and Youth Fair “Guardians of Nature,” a celebration for all schools participating. Children have the opportunity to meet with new friends and experience the strength of collective efforts. Each year PEASMA receives thousands of entries including toys, poems, stories, inventions, whatever and wherever a child’s imagination takes him. The work of the finalists will be on display at Parque Juárez (French Park) and prizes (school supplies) will be given out. There will be displays and demonstrations throughout the day. Please support the future of our community by joining us to acknowledge these children in their efforts to create a better world. Save the date: Monday, December 15, 10am-1pm.
The fair will feature the following activities:
1. Exchange of experiences among children about their work as guardians of nature
2. Conference by experts for the guardians of plants, water, animals, earth, and recycling
4. Presentation of the results obtained by the schools who have earned the title “Friends of Nature”
5. Dance of Mojigangas (large puppets)
6. Circular dance
7. Prizes for the best toys made by the children from re-used materials
8. Closure at 12:00pm.