Planeterra, the non-profit organization founded by G.A.P Adventures to give back to the communities its tours visit, has turned its focus from green to blue. In conjunction with Earth Day 2008, Planeterra carried out a number of projects designed to help alleviate the devastating effects of the shortage of clean drinking water worldwide.
This is the second year that Planeterra has conducted a world-wide cleanup in conjunction with Earth Day. The 2008 campaign included installing water tanks in a remote village in Kenya, drilling a well in the eastern highlands of Guatemala, and providing water tanks to the Annapurna region of Nepal, 300km deep in the Himalayas.
“More than 1.1 billion people don’t have access to clean drinking water,” said Bruce Poon Tip, founder of both G.A.P Adventures and Planeterra. “These projects will not only save lives in these regions, but will also change those lives in a fundamental way.”
G.A.P Adventures also hosted Earth Day events all around the world including a large scale beach cleanup in Panama, and community cleanups in Peru, and the Pantanal in Brazil, a wetland area known for its variety of wildlife. There were also cleanups held along the waterfront in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Nha Trang Beach, Vietnam, and the Mekong Vientiane, Laos. Additionally, in northern Namibia, volunteers worked with the municipality of Swakopmund to clean up a large portion of Swakopmund Beach. G.A.P Adventures’ head office also took part in its second annual community clean-up in Toronto.
There is an easy way for those interested to get involved with Planeterra. G.A.P Adventures is offering a lucky traveller the chance to go on a volunteer tour to Costa Rica where they will help endangered sea turtles by participating in activities including night patrols along the beach, data collection, beach clean-up and area maintenance, monitoring of the baby turtle hatchery, counting baby turtles and releasing them. Anyone interested can enter at http://www.gapadventures.com/contests/blue-contest.php
To find out more about how to get involved in these upcoming projects, please visit www.gapadventures.com/blue