Officially known as the Children’s Summer Camp Scholarship Program, the Eco Kids Summer Camp is a great opportunity for young Belizeans to learn about their natural environment and develop skills while having fun during a week-long jungle adventure.
The adventure begins on Sunday July 15th at Chaa Creek’s Macal River Camp and runs until Sunday, July 22nd. Twenty-four lucky young Belizeans will stay in comfortable casitas and enjoy three healthy meals and snacks each day while taking part in structured educational activities. Chaa Creek supplies all accommodation and meals, the arts and craft materials, tee shirts, 24-hour camp counsellor supervision and guided tours conducted by licensed naturalist guides.
It’s the educational adventure of a lifetime, and the best part is that it’s free.
To apply for the Eco Kids Camp, young people must submit a short 300 word written essay which will be reviewed and shortlisted by the Chaa Creek scholarship committee, with the winners going on to attend summer camp.
Chaa Creek owner and general manager Lucy Fleming, who has been sponsoring the Eco Kids Camp for several years, said that she designed the combination of learning activities and social interaction to make sure that the young students have fun while they receive a hands-on education in biodiversity, natural resource conservation, the ancient Maya, traditional healing, and other subjects.
“It’s a very full week that’s packed with fun and education, and judging from past Eco Kids Camps we can promise that no one will be bored,” Ms Fleming said. “We want the kids to come away with a better knowledge and real appreciation for the natural wonders and cultural history of Belize while they develop their social skills with activities such as field work, song writing and talent shows,” she said.
“Some of our guided educational activities include hiking to ancient Maya sites where we will perform archaeological excavations, horseback riding through jungle trails while studying the plants and wildlife within our 400-acre private nature reserve, hands-on sustainable organic farming techniques, and supervised water activities,” she added.
Roberto Harrison, Chaa Creek’s marketing administrator, agreed that Eco Kids is the opportunity of a lifetime, and will prepare the kids for exciting careers in Eco-tourism and other areas where an understanding and respect for the environment is important.
He also mentioned the deadline for submitting essays;
“To be considered, all essays must be in our office by Friday, June 15th,” he said, “This is such a great opportunity that kids shouldn’t put it off until the last minute. I recommend that students start writing now so that they can do a good job and get it in early,” he said.
“We’re hoping that teachers, parents and friends encourage the students to start writing and to remember these important dates: Deadline for the essays is Friday, June 1st and Camp registration must be completed by Monday, June 25th. Then the fun begins on Sunday, July 15th and goes until Sunday July 22nd, when the Eco Kids graduate, receive their certificates, and are ready to go out and make a difference,” Mr Harrison said.
Ms Fleming said applications could be emailed to [email protected], posted to Chaa Creek, P.O. Box 53, San Ignacio, Cayo District, or dropped off at the Chaa Creek office at 77 Burns Avenue, San Ignacio.
She added that people wishing to learn more about the Eco Kids Summer Camp could contact Denise Duran at Chaa Creek phone 834-4010 or email ecokids[@]chaacreek.com.
“We’re very excited about this year’s Eco Kids Camp and are here to help young people get their essays in and get started on an adventure they’ll never forget,” Ms Fleming said.
“We like to think that some of tomorrow’s leaders and environmentalists will get their start here,” she added.