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Breaking News:

Save The Bays donates to six schools for environmental programs

  • Joe Darville, right, Save The Bays chairman, presents Cheng Bee-Selim, center, a teacher at Bishop Michael Eldon School, with a donation, a reward to the school whose students showed interest in the environment and enrolled in the Youth Environmental Ambassadors (YEA) program. Donations were made to six schools. At left is Rashema Ingraham, YEA facilitator. PHOTOS: SAVE THE BAYS

  • Sister Mary Patricia Russell Junior High School Principal Dominique Russell (second from left) and Inderia Bain, teacher, accept the donation. At right is Joe Darville, Save The Bays chairman; Rashema Ingraham, YEA facilitator, is at left.

  • Sue-Lynne McCrea, Mary Star Catholic Academy (lower school) vice principal, receives her school’s donation from Joe Darville, right, Save The Bays chairman; Rashema Ingraham, YEA facilitator, is at left.

  • Jack Hayward Junior School representative Tamina Anderson accepts a donation from Joe Darville, right, Save The Bays chairman; Rashema Ingraham, YEA facilitator, is at left.

Published: Jun 26, 2017

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Students at six northern Bahamas schools will find environmental programs in their institutions next year due to a donation from Save The Bays.

Officials from recipient schools Sister Mary Patricia Russell Junior School, Eight Mile Rock High School, Sunland Baptist Academy, Bishop Michael Eldon School, Jack Hayward Junior School and Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Academy, were surprised they were selected, without knowing they would be competing for the first of its kind donation.

“We wanted to reward each of the schools whose students were interested enough in the environment to enroll and participate in the Youth Environmental Ambassadors (YEA) program,” said Joe Darville, Save The Bays chairman.

“Those students did extremely well in the most recent session, which was the most challenging of all the series we have done. Not only did these young Bahamians give up every other Saturday for four months; they had to conduct research, sometimes tedious, reporting details that were forwarded to international authorities for inclusion in broader studies,” said Darville. “The 24 students were so diligent. Even if they were sorting and separating types of plastic in beach trash, they understood that what they were doing was helping to paint a broader picture in order to understand sources, develop campaigns to end the litter and find ways to solve the problem that produced the litter and plastic in the first place.”

Two weeks ago, the 24 graduates were pinned during a ceremony that included drumming, part of the program designed to teach teamwork and build self-confidence.

School principals were invited to attend the pinning ceremony.

“When we began to call them up to tell them they were receiving funds for their schools’ environmental programs, their eyes popped, they grinned. No one had any idea,” said Darville, a retired educator who never stopped teaching, but these days spends most of his time speaking about the fragile and oft-threatened Bahamian environment.

Some of the recipient schools have basic environmental programs. Others will be able to introduce gardening, growing vegetables and herbs at the school grounds, or add to their anti-litter campaigns with additional trash receptacles and liners.

Save The Bays will offer the YEA program again during the school year; in the summer, STB will host week-long eco-explorer summer camps for students ages 12 to 16 in July and ages seven to 11 in August. Only 15 slots are available for each week’s camp.



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