Five days in the Amazon and memories for a lifetime. The journey from which we speak today is different from others. When one travels to the Amazon and spends sometime surrounded by this unique and incredible nature we can say that this person will never be the same. Unlike many touristic destinations, the strengh and power you feel coming from the forests and rivers will touch your heart and soul and there is no chance you will return from this travel seeing the world the same way you did before. The journey from which we speak today is different because it was not only the Amazon that has had a great impact on this group of people, but this group of people also have changed the Amazon.
We’re talking about a project called Poliedro in the Amazon – A life lesson, a partnership between Poliedro High School, the Biology teacher Paul Sawaya, most known as Zezo, and Juma Amazon Lodge.
The project is in its 13th edition and 380 students have already taken place in this adventure. But how does this project actually work?
In 2011 Professor Zezo traveled to the Amazon. As a biology teacher clearly he was focused on the environmental education, his goal was to “get lost” into the forest and acquire further knowledge about the Amazonian life. No surprises, right? However, when visiting riverside and indigenous communities he could not help but notice their social issues. By spending sometime with these communities he perceived their needs and deficiencies and had a strong feeling and desire to help. And that’s how this project was born, from a teacher’s way of understanding the world as everyone’s responsibility.
The teacher with the students were able to gather around 4 tons of donations for the 2015 expedition. Among the donations there were: clothing (women, men, children and babies) shoes, toys, books and other supplies that were given to about 400 people, mostly women, children and babies. More than being responsable for collecting donations, the students play a major role in this transformation, they travel to the Amazon to have the opportunity to meet face to face those who they’re helping, their culture and reality.
This year, 36 students and two parents enjoyed 5 days of immersion in the Amazon. The educational character was not letf on the side, Professor Zezo with the teacher and geographer Robsom Magri gave botanic classes in the forest, geography lessons in the rivers and talked about climatology and the influence of human activity on our environment. This makes it much easier to learn, right?
In addition to these classes that are part of the school curriculum, students spent a day in an indigenous community and another day in a riverside community to learn about their reality, hygiene habits, their culture…these were moments of great cultural exchange and personal enrichment.
And what is Juma Lodge’s role in this partnership? Juma is very well respected locally for its sustainable and environmental work since the construction of the hotel and therefore has conquered free passport and credibility among the riverside communities. As its closeness to these communities, Juma Lodge is responsable for talking to them and selecting which communities will receive the donations and verifying their major needs.
Congratulations to Zezo and Poliedro High School for this beautiful initiative! You can always count on Juma Lodge for this partnership!
Now, check out more pictures Zezo took during their stay. If you want to know more, visit: www.zezobio.com