Yesterday, the cohort worked with a local organization which aims to protect the environment by promoting the growth and preservation of mangroves. This organization/community lives in a swampy, wet, humid area where their homes are tiny bamboo houses. The area in which the community resides in attracts a lot of tourists who want to admire and rent tiny bamboo homes for a night or volunteers who want to help plant mangroves. The homes are much like a cabin stays, where folks can spend a night along the ocean and mangroves. Not only does this organization make a positive impact for the environment but they also bring in revenue from tourism. This money helps the community sustain their everyday needs such as food and water, in addition they are able to enhance the ecosystem and maintain their beloved sacred mangrove habitat.
The group learned about the importance of mangroves and the role these plants play in the environment. I learned that mangroves grow in a mixture of salt/fresh water, right where the ocean meets the river which creates the perfect water for mangroves to grow. Mangroves provide shelters for animals, protect shorelines from erosion and create a beautiful ecosystem for aquatic animals.
In the pictures, the group helped churn soft mud extracted from the river/ocean. We poured the mud into small black bags, then planted a young seedling into the black bag, preparing the baby mangrove for the nursery. After making seed bags, we took a boat to the mangrove forest and each student planted two mangroves. It takes six months for a mangrove to grow strong enough to be transported from the nursery to the ocean sand, where it will blossom into a strong mangrove.