Hi! My name is Alicia McDermott and I am fundraising for my Camps International Expedition to Peru with my group from Rivington and Blackrod Sixth Form in July 2021.
For a little bit of information about who Camps International are and what they do, a little bit about me, and why I want to take part, please read below.
What is Camps International?
They are an organisation which is committed to sustainable development in rural and indigenous communities, and environmental conservation. Their cause began in 2002 with a small camp on the Kenyan coast and since then they have expanded and set up more 20 permanent camps in 10 different countries across Africa, Asia, Central and South America. With a particular emphasis on improving the lives of people around the world, they ensure that they support the local economy by employing local people and buying resources from nearby villages. Their conservation projects have helped to protect 100,000 hectares of wilderness in 7 of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, as well as planting 1.1 million trees since 2003. The work Camps International has done has positively impacted the lives of over 120,000 people worldwide by improving access to proper education, training, and healthcare. Alongside this, they work to secure fresh clean water and shelter in some of the poorest areas, provide homes for families in need, and vaccinate and treat livestock to improve animal welfare.
In 2008 they started the Camps Foundation in order to raise the additional funds needed to support their project commitments and 100% of all donations raised are spent on the projects.
Their Website: https://campsinternational.com
There are a number of regional issues that affect Latin America: there is a huge disparity between wealth and poverty, rural areas are being left behind by the developing cities leading to over 50% of rural communities living below the poverty line. A lack of proper education and poor vegetable growing conditions contribute to the chronic malnutrition problems in the highlands. An issue that not only affects Latin America but also the rest of the world is the deforestation of the Amazon rainforest, which is having a huge impact on global warming and our current climate crisis. Camps are working on projects that provide solutions to these issues, some of these projects include:
- Starting tree nurseries which grow native plants to reforest the Amazon, this has also allowed the local community to gain an income from selling saplings to other communities.
- Building greenhouses for families so they can grow their own vegetables, which also gives children the opportunity to learn how to grow their own plants and learn about nutrition.
- Building kitchens and dining rooms in nearby schools.
- Building toilets in local homes to improve health and hygiene problems.
During my time in Peru I could be working on any number of projects, including but not limited to the ones mentioned above. Other projects I could be partaking in include: building new classrooms to help future generations of children in that area, constructing vitally needed community housing, installing and developing local amenities to improve the healthcare and sanitation of the whole community, re-planting indigenous plants to offset environmental damage, or helping the community sustain their livelihoods by digging irrigation canals to bring water from the mountains to nearby farms and houses providing a more consistent water supply to people, crops and animals. I will find out the exact details of the projects I will be part of closer to the time and will provide updates accordingly.
Camps specifically chose Peru because 54% of rural communities live below the poverty line, with a staggering 33% of under 15’s in employment rather than education and almost ⅕ people are malnourished because they are unable to access fresh fruit and vegetables.
Along with partaking in Camps Community and conservation projects, I will be trekking the Salkantay Trail to visit the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu. I will also have the once in a lifetime to meet the local people of Peru and learn about the ancient civilisations, while visiting the floating reed villages on Lake Titicaca.
Why do I want to do this?
My teenage years haven’t been the smoothest, I’ve definitely had some challenges along the way but I think that taking part in something like this would challenge me in ways that nothing ever has before. It would allow me to develop skills not only while I am in South America but also in my day-to-day life here in the UK. The fundraising part of this will help me to build entrepreneurial, budgeting, and timekeeping skills that I may not otherwise develop. Wow I am away with Camps, I will have the opportunity to really develop new skills both physically and mentally; I’ll be learning practical skills such as building and also using communication and problem-solving to adapt to what I’m doing while I’m there.
I have always loved the idea of travelling, and the fact that I will have an opportunity to travel and make an impact somewhere for someone would make the trip even more worthwhile. Not only will I be making a difference in Peru, I will also be able to make a difference in my local community during my fundraising.
Every bit of support I can get for this journey would be so incredibly appreciated, so thank you for taking the time to read about Camps International and what this journey would mean to me. Any donation no matter how big or small is greatly appreciated. During my fundraising in my local area I’ll be wearing an official Camps International T-shirt, if you work for a specific company and you would like your logo to appear on my T-shirt and have a bit of publicity then do not hesitate to contact me and we can work something out.
Once again thank you so much for your time,