The first academy in Tulum, México took place on June 5, 2019 “World Environment Day” with 70 children from 4 different schools, keenly waiting for the Academy to start. The event was free-of-charge for all the attending children, aged 8 to 14. It was possible thanks to Plant-for-the-Planet México and Municipio de Tulum the government of Tulum, which helped us with all the organization process.
The Academy began with some welcoming words of Darinka from Plant-for-the-Planet and Keivyn, from the government of Tulum. They mentioned how glad they are to work with the children and to plant trees for their city. Then the full attention of the children turned to the presentation “Now we children save the world!” given by Climate Justice Ambassador Cesar Galvez. Complex topics, such as sources of carbondioxide, global warming, photosynthesis, the climate crisis and global justice were presented suitable for children. After the presentation, the participants had the chance to clarify their questions. All the children participated in our answer-question session.
After a short lunch break, the children had the opportunity to take action for their future right away. In order to take action and speak up for their future, the children need good presentation and speaking skills. Therefore, the participants prepared and presented short passages from the opening presentation they had listened to in the morning. They gave each other feedback on how to improve their presentations in the future.
For the following part the children were divided into small groups, to learn about global distribution and global justice in the so called “World Game”. It was a great moment for the activity.
Besides, children create action plans for their community. Basically, their ideas were to save the water, plant trees and empower other children. During this activity the participants were collecting ideas to the questions how to get the attention of the media, how to motivate adults, friends and classmates and how to organize a planting party. Afterwards the children gathered in their school groups and planned their own project, which they would want to implement after the Academy.
They went to plant trees! The Children received information on how to plant trees, when to plant them and how to take care of them. In return, the participants were able to show off their newly gained knowledge about the role and importance of trees. In total, they planted 5 tree species. The children finished the planting event with a magnificent Stop Talking, Start Planting.
At the end of the day, family, friends and guests arrived for the evening event. The children proudly presented the prepared presentation and their ideas from the World Café.
An interesting day had come to an end. Apart from the experience and newly found knowledge, all participants were appointed as Ambassadors for Climate Justice and received a certificate, a Plant-for-the-Planet T-shirt and the book ‘Tree-by-Tree’. Organizers and guests were very impressed by the performance of the children.
The Academy was made possible thanks to the commitment of Elementary School Tenochtitlan and its professor who received us in their place and due to the team of local organizers. Special thanks goes out to the Plant-for-the-Planet Program Coordinator Darinka Quintal and also to Helkai Sanchez as co-moderator for the Academy. A huge thanks to all the helpers around the venue, technology, food and tree planting event. Without their support the Academy would not have been possible.
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