To empower communities through education
The ALERT Education Centre (AEC) project was developed to undertake a variety of empowerment programs through classes, workshops, internships, facilitated research placements and field trips.
1. Conservation Education - Participants learn the basics of conservation, biology, ecology and geography as part of a comprehensive syllabus. The conservation education program has four main objectives:
- to increase participants’ awareness of their environment and assist them in developing sound judgement in the management of natural resources;
- to involve participants in activities to increase their understanding of environmental issues;
- to encourage participants to develop the ability to view situations from an environmental point of view, and to undertake simple investigations and interpret the results;
- to emphasize to participants the potential of the environment as a source of benefits and therefore something to conserve, manage and sustain.
2. Basic Life Skills - Participants learn important life skills, including social skills, employment, relationships, goals and dreams, etc. The AEC encourages participants to contemplate their futures and socialise with one another in a constructive manner within a safe environment.
3. Health and Nutrition - Participants learn the basics of healthy nutrition, life styles, disease (including STDs) and family planning. Each topic acknowledges local customs and culture, while at the same time promoting the importance of healthy and safe lifestyles and choices.
4. Fully Funded Internship & Facilitated Research Placements - students of African educational facilities, who otherwise might not have access to the opportunities that we are able to provide, are provided placements to gain practical experience in support of their academic learning. The program seeks to assist in building local capacity for conservation and conservation related tourism. To date our project sites have provided placements to students of the University of Zambia (Lusaka), Copperbelt University (Kitwe), Mukwela Youth Resource Centre (Livingstone), University of Zimbabwe (Harare), National University of Science & Technology (Bulawayo), Midland’s State University (Gweru) and Chinhoyi University of Technology.
5. Vocational Training – Participants are able to undertake training in a variety of vocations including hospitality, carpentry and plumbing such that they are able to improve their employment opportunities.
6. Funding Schooling Costs – Many students are unable to meet the costs of attending school. Through this program these costs are met including the students’ fees, uniforms, text books and stationary.
Livingstone - 3 students given two month internship placements.
Gweru – 15 students on 10 month internship placements.
Livingstone - 2 students given two month internship placements, 1 student given one month facilitated research placement. 42 students undertook a year-long conservation education course.
Gweru – 18 students on 10 month internship placements. A purpose built classroom was created by refurbishing an underutilised building on land provided by Antelope Park.
Livingstone – 4 students given two month internship placements. 30 students undertook a year-long conservation education course.
Gweru – 12 students on 10 month internship placements. 296 children graduate from the conservation education syllabus (8 weeks).
Victoria Falls - 210 children from Chamabondo Primary School have been part of the conservation education classes (12 weeks).
Painting the classroom in Gweru