Jen Perry working with local Eco-Club on community garden
Besides assisting them with farming techniques and sustainable agriculture principles regarding soil fertility, site location and water management, she also connected the club with NRMS’s faculty and staff. This affiliation resulted in a commitment by the school to provide compost, plants and seeds for the club to help them get started with the community garden project. Thanks to these efforts, these young women are now able to adopt new cultivation techniques such as the implementation of terracing, the addition of soil conditioning and the development of their composting system. Moreover, as a consequence of this work with the Peace Corps project, additional opportunities for collaboration might arise between the school’s production program students and other area villagers.
|Jenifer Perry with Eco-Club's young women members|
After finishing her activities as a F2F volunteer, Jennifer has remained in contact with individuals from the country in the hopes of developing a long-standing relationship with NRMS by way of developing sustainability of education and projects. Today, she envisions a deepened exchange relationship between Paul Smith's students and NRMS students in which students can engage in service-learning related projects in both countries. She also hopes to return to the DR with Paul Smith's students to offer a solar panel installation training program with students from the NRMS.
Class instructed by Jen Perry on Renewable Energy
at the Natural Resource Management School
This was the first time traveling to a country other than the U.S. and Canada for Jennifer. As she mentioned in a report that she wrote as part of her follow-up activities with F2F: “This trip has impacted me very deeply personally… I was very appreciative of our ability to experience what we thought was a genuine DR experience, not a typical all inclusive vacation version of the DR… As an instructor of Green Community Design, I left the country with many potential projects in mind…” And she added: "In general, the people of the DR are exceptionally friendly, welcoming, passionate, intelligent, and deeply in love with their country and committed to causes which would benefit it."