Friends of Galapagos New Zealand is conscious that as a small organization, we need to focus our efforts in just a few areas, in order to have a significant effect. We have decided initially to focus on Education and Volunteers. We will expand our program activity gradually as and when we have the resources.
Key to the long term protection of the Galapagos Ecosystem is ensuring that the people of Galapagos and Ecuador are at the forefront of the conservation effort. Essential to this is ensuring that they have access to the best possible education in all its forms.
At the same time we need to educate the people of New Zealand, Australia and the World, about the wonders of Galapagos, and the dangers that threaten to damage the long term viability of the natural Galapagos ecosystem.We are therefore developing a program of student exchanges and scholarships to fulfill these two objectives.
We have identified the availability of a scholarships offered by NZ Aid for students from Galapagos and Ecuador, to come to New Zealand to study for a post-graduate qualification. We will be working with several organizations in Galapagos to identify individuals who may be able to take advantage of these scholarships which can in certain circumstances include studying for a PhD.
There have always been opportunities for volunteers in Galapagos, and a number of organizations there have volunteer programs. Volunteers from New Zealand and Australia have been involved in some of these programs.
FOGNZ is looking to facilitate volunteers wishing to work in Galapagos, to provide them with information in advance about the opportunities and requirements. We are also looking to recruit a coordinator in Galapagos who would act as a point of contact for organizations, volunteers and ourselves. The coordinator would look to develop a long term strategy to ensure that volunteers from around the world were able to have a significant input into the conservation of Galapagos. He or she would identify needs and publicize ‘vacancies’ and needs and ensure that volunteers are being used effectively and are appreciated.
For more information on Volunteers see our Volunteering page.