Close to 300 students educated on work of Iwokrama

Students of Westfield Primary School being educated on the Iwokrama International Centre for Rainforest Conservation and Development (Iwokrama).

TWO hundred and eight students were recently given the opportunity to learn about the Iwokrama International Centre for Rainforest Conservation and Development (Iwokrama).
The students, drawn from four schools, were educated on the centre’s work and a myriad of environmental topics.

In a release on Tuesday, it was stated that the centre’s staff, during the course of last week, visited Westfield Primary, Cummings Lodge Secondary and Graham’s Hall Primary, and had the privilege of hosting the Tuschen Deaf Academy in the board room of the High Street office.

Students of Cummings Lodge Secondary School participating in an interactive session during the visit by the team from Iwokrama

According to the centre, presentations and discussions were focused on protected areas, biodiversity, climate change, sustainable development, sustainable tourism and the centre’s work. “The sessions were interactive, and students were given the opportunity to win small tokens by correctly answering questions,” the statement read.

The Iwokrama International Centre (IIC) was established in 1996 under a joint mandate from the Government of Guyana and the Commonwealth Secretariat to manage the Iwokrama forest, a unique reserve of 371,000 hectares of rainforest “in a manner that will lead to lasting ecological, economic and social benefits to the people of Guyana and to the world in general”.

The centre, guided by an international board of trustees is unique, providing a dedicated well managed and researched forest environment. The forest is zoned into a Sustainable Utilisation Area (SUA) and a Wilderness Preserve (WP) in which to test the concept of a truly sustainable forest where conservation, environmental balance and economic use can be mutually reinforcing.

The IIC collaborates with the Government of Guyana, the Commonwealth and other international partners and donors to develop new approaches and forest management models to enable countries with rainforests to market their ecosystem services whilst carefully managing their resources through innovative and creative conservation practices.

Iwokrama brings together 20 local communities and approximately 7,000 people who are shareholders and participants in the IIC’s sustainable timber, tourism, research operations and forest management activities through complex co-management and benefit sharing arrangements.

It also creates a platform for scientists and researchers to engage in ground breaking research into the impacts of climate change on the forest and measuring the scope and value of its ecosystem services.