Building Stronger Communities Through the Celebrity Cruises Galapagos Fund
“Connecting people to nature and to each other to leave the world a better place”
Galapagos offers the rare opportunity for visitors to become immersed in and feel changed by nature. Tourism also can help improve the lives and economies of the people who call the Islands home. Our partners at Celebrity Cruises have found many ways to help protect, sustain, and celebrate this extraordinary place. The Celebrity Cruises Galapagos Fund is an important way to ensure that Galapagos and its unparalleled wildlife and landscapes remain wild.
Celebrity’s guests in Galapagos are encouraged to join our efforts to promote a healthy future for all of Island’s inhabitants — the people and the amazing wildlife. We seek out local initiatives that ensure people have what they need to live well without jeopardizing future livelihoods or putting at risk the integrity of an irreplaceable Galapagos.
With small investments of up to $20,000, the Celebrity Cruises Galapagos Fund supports local projects such as organic farming, responsible pet ownership, and ground-breaking education initiatives. We are proud of the positive impact resulting from the more than $1,200,000 raised to date, and that many past guests choose to continue to care for Galapagos as members of Galapagos Conservancy for years to come. For more information about how the Fund changes lives, please read the Fund’s newsletter, Natural Connections.
Did you cruise on to Galapagos with Celebrity? Keep your Galapagos experience alive and make a contribution to the Celebrity Cruises Galapagos Fund.
The Celebrity Cruises Galapagos Fund has made timely investments in over 50 community initiatives that link the security of the local economy with the protection of the Islands. Across the Archipelago, the Fund has helped to:
- Improve agricultural practices and fisheries management. Beyond the obvious health benefits, pesticide-free vegetables and fresh-caught fish are a recipe for a sustainable economy. Buying locally also decreases the dependency on imported products thereby reducing the potential introduction of invasive pests that could threaten native plants and animals. .
- Fortify hospitality and entrepreneurship training for high school students so that upon graduation they are ready to move into the workforce. By stimulating creativity, and self-confidence among young Galapagueños and providing them with useful skills we are preparing them to enter the local tourism sector or to development real-life, locally-based business projects.
- Reduce the impact of plastic waste. While most plastic waste arrives with ocean currents from faraway places, there is increasing local plastic use. Our partners work with sports clubs, scouts, conservation clubs, artisan groups, and others to implement campaigns on finding solution to the plastic problem. Local youth often join park rangers on coastal clean-up trips to outlying areas, providing a better understanding of the behind the scenes effort to protect the Islands and inspiration to follow a career in conservation.
- Motivate responsible pet management through free sterilization and awareness programs. Darwin Animal Doctors’ qualified volunteer vets help to minimize domestic animal predation of native animals by offering free spaying and neutering for dogs and cats as well as emergency attention and free parasite treatments for sterilized animals. Local youth volunteer in the clinic’s outreach program to encourage people to be responsible pet owners.
- Provide facilities for children with special needs. The center that specializes in early stimulation treatment for children with Down’s syndrome, cerebral palsy, and autism was outfitted with equipment to help develop independent-living skills, plus activities that help connect the children with nature. The Fund built a kitchen and dining room facility at the Galapagos School for Children with Special Needs that provides a safe place to develop skills for employment and independent living.
- Expand facilities at the host school for an innovative teacher training program that provides the framework and vision for deep educational change. Teacher professional development workshops for over 400 local teachers are complimented by coaching sessions and learning circles that focus on student-centered teaching strategies and activities that integrate local examples and sustainability issues in every subject and grade level.
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