Danjugan Island is the perfect playground for kids and kids at heart. With its beaches, plentiful and colorful marine life, mangroves, caves, sea eagles and other birds, what more could a kid ask for?
A few months ago, on one of Danjugan’s marine and wildlife camps, I was lucky to see kids smile and laugh in delight as they experienced many firsts – first time to snorkel and see underwater wonders, first time to see an eagle, and more. I watched them turn somber as they learned about the destruction humans have wrought upon nature and how humans – including them – are paying the price. I smiled as they got fired up when they were told that they could do something to help the earth. And, I felt humbled and fortunate when I led them in a guided meditation and water activity to make them feel their oneness and connectedness with nature.
The Danjugan Island Environmental Education Program (DEEP) teaches environmental awareness and conservation to public elementary school students and teachers from the mainland of Negros Occidental province. For two and a half days, campers attend classroom lectures and take part in fun, physical activities designed to teach them to be stewards of the environment. During my stay in Danjugan, I was able to join and volunteer in the marine and wildlife camp of Sialay Elementary School.
Below are some photos and descriptions to give an idea of what goes on in these marine and wildlife camps – and just how fun they can get!
Classes need not be boring. In Danjugan, each lecture is short and packed with information to serve as a prelude to outdoor activities.
The kids’ very early morning energizer before going bird watching
These two kids on the left, with their powerful voices and heartrending melodies, stole the show. Some would argue though, that the Danjugan staff, in their quirky performance and costumes, are the real stars.
Danjugan Island also holds regular paying camps for kids and teens. Check Danjugan Island’s website for the schedules and to know more about Danjugan Island in general.
For those who want to support Danjugan Island’s educational program for public elementary school kids, you may donate and/or volunteer. Details are on the website as well.
This is the third of my three-part series on Danjugan Island. Read the first, about reasons to love Danjugan, and the second, about Danjugan as the choice for conscious travelers and environmentalists.