This month’s recipient of the Sayulita Life $5,000 donation is the Mar y Vida camp, run and organized by the local organization El Centro Creativo.
The Mar y Vida camp is a five day camp for local youth, to be held on July 1st, 2019, through July 5th. The camp includes five days of fun, exploratory and learning based activities, such as art, surfing, and science experiments. I spoke with Risa Machuca, one of the leaders of the camp, about the Mar y Vida experience, and how Sayulita Life’s donation will help impact and benefit the camp and the local youth attending.
First, can you tell readers a bit about the Mar y Vida camp, and when it first began?
This camp began last Summer in 2018, and it started with a desire to join forces with others to give back to the community that we are so grateful to be a part of. We also wanted to do something through El Centro Creativo to bring awareness around this fantastic space that’s available to our local community. Overall, this camp/ program is to spearhead movement and awareness for the full year’s efforts of El Centro, and ultimately get more local involvement to create additional programs during low season as well as throughout the year. For those that don’t know much about El Centro Creativo, our special and blessed location on this planet is its own superpower magnet; the world comes to Sayulita and the surrounding areas.
We want to integrate the creative talent that passes through town and our population to bank the knowledge of the world's smartest. Think TED talks for our town's kids! There are many talents of all ages that have roots in Sayulita. We want them involved. We are a movement that's about promoting our best and brightest youth, no matter what social-economic, race, or status, by the things our whole town values; the things we ALL want for our next generation of Sayuleros. El Cenrto can be the hub for workshops in entrepreneurship, being an author, film workshops, and more. There’s potential for a world class grassroots super smart camp that happens throughout the summer with other programs all year. Think BIG!
How will Sayulita Life's $5,000 peso donation help or benefit this camp?
Sayulita Life’s donation will help with all of the materials and costs associated with putting on the camp, since the camp is completely free and of no cost for the participating children. El Centro is able to put on this camp through the work of our amazing volunteers and donors who help make this experience possible. Sayulita Life’s donation will help to purchase things needed for the camp, such as supplying materials for projects and experiments, art materials, the cost for discounted tours, etc. Furthermore, aach year we have a project inspired by environmental awareness as part of the camp’s itinerary. Last year we were able to get three interactive ash trays placed on the beaches in Sayulita. This year enough funds have been raised to build at least two sea inspired metal recycle containers to place in town.
What types of kids can join the camp? Is it open for any child living in Sayulita? Is there a certain age range?
The camp is open for local children who attend a public grade school either in Sayulita or San Ignacio, and are from the ages of 8 through 12 years old. These kids show promise, awareness, and have good grades. There are a total of 12 children in attendance this year.
What life skills and knowledge do you hope the children learn from attending this camp?
First, Bahia de Banderas is planning to teach a two day water safety course where the children will learn how to save a life in a dangerous or life threatening ocean situation. We also hope the kids gain knowledge of our planet and environment, and what we can do to help protect it. In addition, each kid will be learning more about surfing techniques and skills. Mostly, we want the local kids to have the feeling of joy that comes through shared learning experiences; we want them to gain self-confidence and the feeling of empowerment that comes with challenging oneself when trying new things.
For more information about the Mar y Vida camp or about El Centro Creativo, please visit El Centro Creativo’s Facebook Page or Website.
*Since its founding in 2004, SayulitaLife.com has been dedicated to giving back to the community of Sayulita. In our 15th year as a company, Sayulita Life has created the “Giving Fund”, where we have pledged to donate $5,000 pesos EVERY MONTH to a local charity or cause. Read more at https://www.sayulitalife.com/giving-back.
Written by: Aanya Sheikh-Taheri