April 30, 2014 – More than 8,000 students, community members, Sandals Resorts team members and guests participated in and are expected to benefit from environmental initiatives that took place in the Caribbean as part of the Sandals Foundation’s recognition of April as Environmental Awareness Month.
Also included in this effort, the Sandals Foundation, through its partnership with the Releaf Environmental Awareness Programme Competition (REAP) in Schools, contributed to educational posters on endangered species that were handed out to 75 schools.
“The Sandals Foundation is pleased to once again dedicate April to environmental awareness,” said Heidi Clarke, Director of Programmes of the Sandals Foundation. “It was such a success last year through not only our partnership with the Releaf Environmental Awareness Programme (REAP), but also with the assistance of our Sandals Foundation volunteers who saw to 2,000 students and guests participating in our outreach activities. Additionally, we were excited to have Grenada on board, where the Sandals Foundation has partnered with the Dove Conservation Programme to protect the habitat of the endangered Grenada Dove.”
The Sandals Foundation organized 16 environmental outreach activities across the islands of Antigua, The Bahamas, Grenada, The Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI) and Jamaica. Marine Awareness Month highlights included marine-oriented Reading Road Trips at Foundation-adopted schools; interactive sessions focusing on endangered turtles and other marine life at the Flanker Resource Centre and Kings Primary School in Jamaica; activities such as turning trash into art at the Edward Garthling Youth Centre and a lesson on coral reefs at the Grace Bay Beach in the TCI; as well as a session on the importance of ridding our waters of the invasive lionfish, along with a beach cleanup in The Bahamas.
“Teachers across the island have a very huge mandate in ensuring our students learn about different areas that affect our daily lives, but we also need the help of society on a whole,” said Wendy Thomas, a teacher at Cedar Grove Primary School in Antigua. “The Sandals Foundation does just that and we thank them for their efforts. I believe we both understand the importance of the environment and these projects are geared towards encouraging our children to adopt good practices that will in the long run achieve the goal of protecting our environment.”