Earth Day: Green Volunteer Abroad Programs

In celebration of Earth Day 2017, we wanted to highlight a few of API’s “green” volunteer programs and initiatives around the world!

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Brazil – API partners with two nonprofits in Brazil who encourage actions on behalf of nature preservation, and in the best interests of quality of life for future generations. Through the conservation of biodiversity, the responsible use of natural resources and the preservation of endangered species, we depend greatly on the collaboration of volunteers who share the vision of preserving endangered wild populations and rescuing, rehabilitating and reintegrating wild animals into their habitat.

How do volunteers contribute?

Depending on the strengths and interests of the volunteers, tasks can range from:

  • Separating and preparing food for the animals
  • Cleaning enclosures
  • Maintenance work
  • Treating and caring for the species
  • Helping local staff to care for animals while they are receiving recovery treatment
  • Planting and harvesting vegetation and fruits used to feed the anima

In addition to seeking the support of volunteers, these organizations also instruct and train members of local communities to become guardians of the environment, aiming to improve the situation of wildlife and guarantee a balanced future for the community, besides conducting workshops and lectures about conservation, sustainability, animal well being, wildlife rehabilitation, as well as workshops on stranded marine animals

Learn about the options for the environmentally-minded, looking for opportunities to lend a hand in Brazil by contacting API’s Program Manager, Brittany Boehr at brittany.boehr@apiabroad.com

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Ecuador – API’s volunteer programs in Ecuador are committed to practices of social and environmental responsibility and have a wide range of environmental and ecological projects across the country. The Galapagos Islands is a unique place in this world, with a fragile eco-system that faces many challenges, among which the quick spreading invasive plant species that destroy the local habitat. Volunteers live, learn and volunteer on organic sustainable farms in the Galapagos in areas of reforestation, trail improvements, invasive species control, or coffee farming.

The program also dedicates service to a reserve in the dry tropical forest of the Ecuadorian coast. Today only 2% of Ecuador’s dry forest remains intact resulting in a loss of habitat for the native flora and fauna of the area.  Many of the coastal forests have been deforested for agriculture and fragile habitats such as dry forests, mangroves and other wetlands have been lost or severely degraded.  The western forests of the Ecuadorian coast are considered to be the most fragile in the world due to the high number of species found in such a small area and this reserve aims to preserve the forest whilst educating others about conservation practices.  Many of the species found in the dry forest area are endangered due to careless development practices and as little research has been done on the region, the reserve attempts to create data and information on the local species. Volunteers have collaborated in projects such as reforestation, trail improvement and research/observation.

Learn about the many options for the environmentally-minded, looking for opportunities to lend a hand in Ecuador by contacting API’s Program Manager, Brittany Boehr at brittany.boehr@apiabroad.com

API is also proud to support a long-running carbon-offset matching program, which has helped to fund a number of sustainable projects around the world (read more here).

These programs are all still accepting applications for the fall 2017 and academic year 2017/2018 terms – apply today!

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