In preparation for the summer 2012 Service Learning Program in the Dominican Republic, InteRDom Internships, together with the Global Coalition for Peace (GCFP) and the Study Abroad office at the City College of New York (CCNY), presented an urban gardening workshop and practicum on Friday, May 25th to the participants enrolled in the program.
Lord directs GCFP’s Women’s Self-Reliance program, which has been implemented in Guatemala since 2005 and offers information to women in economically-depressed situations on nutrition, intensive gardening and micro-enterprise in order to help them to provide for their families and live more comfortable lives.
The workshop– an addendum to the regular mandatory pre-departure orientation session held prior to all InteRDom special programs– featured a presentation, video and demonstration given by Rose Lord, registered nurse and co-founder of the Global Coalition for Peace (GCFP), which seeks to create a more equitable world through the pursuit of internal peace and external service. Lord directs GCFP’s Women’s Self-Reliance program, which has been implemented in Guatemala since 2005 and offers information to women in economically-depressed situations on nutrition, intensive gardening and micro-enterprise in order to help them to provide for their families and live more comfortable lives. She also collaborates with the InteRDom’s parent institution, Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD) on the School Gardens Initiative and the DR Environmental Film Festival.
During the workshop, Lord trained participants in intensive gardening techniques, which aim to maximize the food output from a 4 foot by 4 foot plot of land (or garden box). These techniques will be useful for the students when they travel to the Dominican Republic in June to partner with local high school students and Dominican community and government organizations on a community gardening initiative that will impact some 50 families in the semi-urban communities of Cielo and Bayona. The project will be carried out in conjunction with InteRDom’s partners La Agencia Adventista de Desarrollo y Recursos Asistenciales (ADRA), the Ministry of Agriculture of the Dominican Republic and the Dominican Republic National Botanical Gardens.
This workshop is a response to the InteRDom program’s belief that students participating in service learning programs should be capacitated in the area in which they will be working before they travel. Because of the 4-week duration of the program, it will be important for the students to be already well-versed in urban gardening skills in order to maximize the results of the time spent working in the communities. All students received a copy of Lord’s presentation, as long as printed materials to study before traveling.
The internship program, InteRDom, an initiative of Global Foundation for Democracy and Development (GFDD) and Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (FUNGLODE), is the premier internship, research and academic study program in the Dominican Republic. It offers international students the opportunity to research important topics at the forefront of the United Nations agenda, obtain professional experience by interning with Dominican organizations and businesses related to their fields of study and/or earn academic credits by taking courses and seminars at a local university.