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  • Melanie Beard

Careyes Foundation

For a community to thrive, it must be healthy in every way. The natural environment must be preserved and agriculture enhanced, its citizens must have work and education should be available to all, support should be given to culture and arts. If any of these elements fails, the entire structure is weakened and susceptible to potential delinquency, therefore constant action is required.

The ‘?! Careyes Foundation’ is a unique model to integrate every aspect of a community, occurring in one of the planet’s more pristine and beautiful places, the Pacific coast of Mexico, creating a comprehensive solution that can be applied in other places around the world.

At the end of August, they welcomed three new volunteer English teachers from the United States who have been trained in the natural language learning instructional methodology, following a curriculum that was developed specifically to serve the educational needs of the rural communities of Costalegre. In collaboration with La Catalina Foundation, they have now published two books in the Beyond Borders English book series, and will continue to add a new book each year until there is a specific book for each grade level.

This year, the foundation will have five English instructors teaching biweekly lessons to over 1,200 children in eleven local primary schools. They will provide over 3,000 hours of English language instruction this school year alone in order to reach the long-term goal of every child achieving bilingual fluency by the time they graduate high school.

From July to August 2016, the CACP hosted internationally-recognized artist Adrià Julià as this season’s Artist in Residence. Julià’s exhibition “Endless Endless Pools” showcases multiple projects that incorporate various media of artistic expressions. Julià led workshops for 23 children from the village of Miguel Hidalgo Viejo in which they learned about the process of video production.

They created short films whose storylines are interwoven with the history of their village, collected from Julià’s interviews with the founding residents. Along with this project, Julià worked with

children to create silicone casts of the bark textures of various local tree species to highlight the natural beauty of the environment.

From his Machiavelli-inspired surrealist films to his local collaborations, Julià’s works were rendered an innovative inspiration by both the art world and the Careyes community. The exhibit will be on display in the Careyes Art Space through October 2016.

For over 34 years, sea turtles arriving to nest in Careyes have been protected by Careyes residents and a dedicated team of locals. Since 1983, the STPCC has released 1,259,029 newborn turtles and secured 18,345 nests from four different species (Olive Ridley, Black, Hawksbill, and Leatherback).

During this past season (July 2015 to June 2016), the Careyes Fundation protected the nests of 1,773 sea turtles on Playa Teopa. Because this population will only increase in the future, they are seeking to expand the STPCC facilities in Careyes to protect this new influx to ensure that these endangered sea turtles continue to have a safe place to nest.

In April 2016, the Foundation hosted the second annual Creation Lab, an event for the new generation of filmmakers in Mexico. This collaboration with esteemed artists attracted a great deal of public interest and led to a partnership with Cinépolis, who donated projectors and a sound system to equip a movie theater in Careyes.

In this new theater, they will host bimonthly events for local communities to expose them to the cinematic arts by offering film screenings on a variety of subjects, from children’s entertainment to education and ecology. These events will allow them to identify potential interest in workshops on cinema for the children of the communities. Already, two local students are learning new skills and gaining experience through creating and updating media materials for the Foundation.

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