CCFC’s newest educational resource is proving itself in the field this week with students of Kids & Birds program. With these hand bird guides students can identify birds in the field and access their common names in Q’eqchi’, English and the scientific name.
For students that have already taken part in CCFC’s Kids & Birds basic curriculum, CCFC has developed a one day workshop on water, the role of forests in the water cycle and the importance of forest conservation for birds, water and people.
CCFC has a new bird guide for primary school students. Norma and Gloria Caal Bac present this wonderful bird guide to the students of Mestela school. Norma, a 12th grade teaching student, is doing her student teaching at Mestela school this year. Gloria is a CCFC Kids & Birds instructor.
In 2019 all participating Kids & Birds schools will receive a laminated trifold field guide for their class room. These field guides include local birds that students will recognize from their backyards and surrounding forests. The guide includes common names in Q’eqchi’ Maya where possible. The trifolds will be used by students inside and outside the class room before, during and after their time at CCFC.
WALC participants from the fall of 2017 met Saturday to begin a composting project in their village. Last fall 15 young women from five villages in the Puruhla mountains of Baja Verapaz took part in CCFC’s WALC program. All fifteen are currently finishing their 2018 school year and most plan to participate in WALC again this fall. On September 22, seven of these young women began a composing project that they hope to spread to the villages in their region. “Why throw something away that is useful?” says Brenda Aracely of Panzal. Last fall was Brenda’s second year in WALC. Brenda plans on returning in October for her third year.
Thanks to the opportunities and leadership skills gained by these young women through the WALC program, composting and agro-forest gardening are catching on in their region.
Families receive two containers, one for inorganic trash (marked in red) and one for organic material for composting (marked in green).
Since 2014, CCFC has been collaborating with Indigo Expeditions. Their work has focussed on assessing levels of amphibian and reptile diversity on our campus. To date they have identified 17 species of amphibians and 34 species of reptiles. Around 50% of the amphibian species are endangered and endemic to the region, as are many of the reptiles.
Over the next few years of Indigo’s continued work we expect the number of species encountered here to increase, for example in the first half of 2018 alone, five species of snake have been encountered here for the first time.
The future work of Indigo Expeditions will focus on assessing how amphibians and reptiles are able to recolonize our agroecology and reforestry parcels (as seen above: this Keeled Helmeted Iguana was found in our Amaranth and Dalia garden). We are thrilled to maintain this long-term collaboration with Indigo, their work helps to inform our conservation work and always keeps us inspired.
Today we officially have completed the outer walls of the Big Quetzal. Our building crew is proud of a job well done, as we move fully into our final push to complete the second floor and interior walls in the last quarter of the building.
The San Lucas Sequila primary and the two primary schools of Sequila all got a warbler coloring book last week. This year, 2018, CCFC will give 1,200 warbler coloring books to the students that visit CCFC for Kids & Birds.