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Intag, Ecuador, High School
Project by Touch The Jungle
Touch The Jungle will celebrate the Grand Opening
of the TTJ High School with the start of the 2014 Fall School
See photos of the school construction
Touch the Jungle has been working in the Ecuador
area of Intag for several years now, which contains rain forests
to cloud forests to high altitude desert habitats, near the back
side of the Playa de Oro Reserve that we have supported for so
many years. The Intag region consists mainly of rural family farms
raising organic coffee and fruit. Many families live in extreme
poverty and the average income is just $100 a month for entire
families, in a country where shoes, clothing, and cars cost the
same as in the US. Could you survive on $100 a month, much less
support a family? Yet despite the poverty, this region has passed
revolutionary local environmental laws to protect their environment,
the habitats, and natural waterways, because they understand these
natural resources are priceless and irreplaceable. For the past
several years, Touch The Jungle built and has beensupporting a
wildlife rescue center in Intag near Apuela. But we have other
ways also for helping this rural farming community in their fight
against copper mining and timber companies, upholding their environmental
protection laws, and maintaining their way of life!
As you know, Touch the Jungle's mission is: *Protect threatened rainforest and cloud forest habitats. *Protect, rescue, and rehabilitate native animals. *Empower local people to preserve the rainforest and protect
These goals are interdependent. Wildlife cannot
survive without habitat. The habitat cannot survive if the local
people don't protect it. The local people cannot survive without
wildlife and the forest. Yet extreme poverty, lack of jobs, and
lack of education cause many communities to accept the offers
of loggers and miners just to provide their families with the
necessities of life. If we want local people to support and protect
the rainforest and its wildlife, then we must support them. This
Touch The Jungle does, by supporting community projects such as
health care and education, and assisting them in developing environmentally-friendly
sources of income such as ecotourism.
In the process of establishing the wildlife center and our project
into the local Intag community, we identified the greatest needs
of the community and how we can help support their efforts of
environmental protection and their organic farming practices.
This rural farming community does not have a high school in which
their young people can get a high school diploma and make a better
life for themselves. In 2013-2014, we took on the project of building
a high school/trade school for the Apuela area of Intag. This
school will not only provide the young adults of this area with
a high school diploma, but also, they will get training in various
trades relative to their community needs such as organic agriculture,
organic farm animal husbandry practices, artesian crafts, forestry,
water shed management, etc. This school will help educate the
young adults of this region to have the tools and knowledge to
not only protect their forests, watersheds, and practice organic
farming and farm animal care, but ultimately helps Touch the Jungle
protect the wildlife and habitat through these young people, generation
after generation. The school will also become the base location
for Touch The Jungle's future wildlife outreach & educational
programs for the locals.
Touch The Jungle Teachers, 9th through 12th grade, with TTJ
volunteer, Grace Lush, 4th from left.
In 2012-2013, TTJ fundraised extensively to raise
enough donations to build the school. The students fundraised locally
by selling raffle tickets to win a variety of prizes that were donated
by TTJ. Other local supporters in Intag started a coffee plant co-operative
in which coffee farmers that need to buy more coffee plants but
cannot afford to, donated their time to care for 20,000 coffee seedlings
donated by the School Association. In return for their work, each
volunteer received a certain number of coffee plants for their own
farm. The remaining coffee plants were sold and profits went to
the Touch The Jungle high school construction fund. And back in
the U.S., our volunteers ran an online auction for over 8 months
selling various items that our U. S. supporters donated. Our sponsoring
nonprofit, Earthways Foundation, matched all the donations we raised
during that time to help us reach our total fundraisng goal of $30,000.
(Earthways Foundation is a US 501(c)3 nonprofit organization tax
ID 65-402-1351). We started construction in late 2013 and completed
the building and grounds work by mid 2014. The school was officially
ready for the start of school for the 2014 fall session. The school
building houses 3 classrooms which are seperated by removable partitions
so that the seperate classrooms can be opened up into one big room
for community events. We also put in a small kitchen so that students
can prepare meals as needed and a seperate restroom building.
Elected School Association Board members for 2012-2013 term.
The local name of the school will be the Spanish equivalent
of our project name Touch The Jungle, "Sienta la Selva".
See photos of the school construction
You can visit our Facebook Page to view photos of the school
construction from start to finish, and get the most current
updates about the school and other Touch The Jungle projects.
See the Facebook page links on the right or left of this page
to join us on Facebook. If you have any questions about this
project or want to find out how you or your group can help out,
please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
for more info.
Thanks for your support! We could not have been able to provide
this much needed source of education to the people of Intag
without your help!
Touch The Jungle Project Director
No Tours planned for 2016
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