Chicago Meets St. Vincent Sustainability Event

Sustainability is key to a brighter, greener, healthier future. It is our mission to teach and promote environmentalism by hosting tours and offering free school field trips at our Gaia Climate Center in Chicago, IL. Another key element to succeeding in elevating our mission is to partner with like-minded organizations and collaborate on projects that promote sustainable efforts and build up communities. The Gaia Movement has partnered with different organizations that all share that same mission of sustainable actions and environmental awareness, with the goal to empower and teach new ways to live a more sustainable life. Richmond Vale Academy (RVA) is one such partnership that Gaia has made to achieve that goal of spreading environmentalism and teaching the public about sustainable actions!

Growing With a New Partner

Gaia has partnered with Richmond Vale Academy to promote this environmental volunteer program and offer scholarships to local youth. These scholarships are awarded after a rigorous application process, but have proven valiant with Gaia’s first two scholarship recipients heading off to make a change in the world and bring back skills necessary to help bring up local areas. Richmond Vale Academy offers a few different volunteer opportunities, but the most popular options are the 6-month to St. Vincent and the Grenadines and the 10-month to Africa. Recipients learn about environmentalism, cultural differences, sustainable methods, permaculture, and renewable resources and security in other countries. It is an invaluable experience that impacts the community and the volunteers, so much so that some volunteers stay on to teach or work full time!

An Immersive Experience in the Caribbean

In hopes of learning more about St. Vincent to better promote the scholarship opportunities, Gaia representatives, along with representatives from Stein Learning Gardens and Richmond Vale Academy, traveled to St. Vincent this past fall. They received a tour of St. Vincent from native residents, historians, and environmental gurus. They learned about the history of St. Vincent and saw first-hand the sustainable actions being taken by the natives to increase food security and renewable resources. There was a natural and sustainable beauty of the island with natural medicinal herbs, fruit trees, home gardens, beautiful greenery, and more!

The Event to Bring It All Together

Gaia Movement hosted an event in celebration of the scholarship recipients and Gaia representatives traveling to St. Vincent with partners from Stein Learning Gardens and Richmond Vale Academy. Our Chicago Meets St. Vincent Sustainability Event kicked off with a chat & chew with like minded environmentalists and local nonprofit directors. Afterwards, an informative presentation was held from RVA director, Stina Herberg, and Stein Learning Gardens Operations Manager, Richard Kirkpatrick. They discussed St. Vincent’s organic way of life, the St. Vincent volunteer opportunities, use of natural and renewable resources, and permaculture farming methods. The presentation was riveting and sparked questions and discussions from all the guests. After discussions, we introduced our creative segment which included poetry slams, musical numbers, and speeches from community members and leaders at our event. A raffle took place to equip patrons with an opportunity to learn more about Gaia and the sustainable efforts of our Climate Center. Our event was a major success and received positive feedback from all the guests about the event’s festivities, the organic gourmet refreshments, and interactive segments. Future events have already been planned with the next one at the end of January!

To learn more about The Gaia Movement and stay updated on the events check our website or follow us on social media to get notified of new updates for all events and Gaia Climate Center initiatives!

To learn more about Richmond Vale Academy and changing your life with a volunteer abroad opportunity in the Caribbeans or Africa check out their website: https://richmondvale.org/

To support Richmond Vale Academy or to be a scholarship sponsor for the environmental volunteer abroad program email: stina@richmondvale.org

To support educational programs and environmental initiatives at Gaia Movement USA email: eva@gaia-movement.org

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