Climate Activism Internship in the Caribbean

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About

Join a 1-month or 6-month intensive program that includes studies, courses, and hands-on activities to help prepare the small island nation of St. Vincent and the Grenadines ready for Climate Change.

Global warming and climate change are serious. St. Vincent and the Grenadines is a “disaster-prone” country. Hurricanes and flooding kill people and leave hundreds homeless. Climate change has thus become a major issue and there is a need for individuals to take action for a secure and sustainable future.
During 8 years we have planted 30,000 trees, cleaned up 30 tons of trash from rivers and beaches, set up 80 organic gardens and 6 Biogas digesters, produced TV and Radio programs, and held "Open Days" in which we teach in schools, community centers, and festivals. Join us to make a lasting impact on these beautiful islands.

Richmond Vale Academy is a climate center with solar, biogas digester, water collection, climate smart farming, permaculture, and more.

Highlights
  • Learn about climate change, study, watch and discuss documentaries with your team
  • Learn to run projects bottom up by mobilizing and teaching people
  • Improve your social and practical skills
  • Live in a community of like-minded people from all over the world
  • Learn to grow organic vegetables in a tropical climate permaculture way

Questions & Answers

Reviews

8.74 Rating
based on 39 reviews
  • Growth 8.2
  • Support 8.1
  • Fun 8.4
  • Housing 8.3
  • Safety 8.2
  • Impact 10
  • Support 10
  • Fun 10
  • Value 10
  • Safety 10
Showing 1 - 8 of 39
Default avatar
Jost
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

RVA - Climate Change Program

I was part of a 6 month program at Richmond Vale Academy on the beautiful island of St. Vincent. We were working in several smaller or bigger projects to take action against climate change. Our main project was to build gardens with people from the nearby town of chateublair to create food security and spread the message of organic, permaculture farming. During the project I learned alot, and although not everything is perfect and I don't agree with every the community of RVA stands for, the time and experience I had I consider to be amongst the best time of my life! While certain aspects of life at RVA were suboptimal when I was there (like the food we were not growing majorly ourselve at that point in time and the use of land on the property),most things that were suboptimal were in the process of change towards the better. Everything needs time and work and RVA provides a great environment for growth, an opportunity to take action and you'll meet plenty of nice people on the way. Besides work and the project... The beach and the gorgeous paradise Island of St. Vincent are stunning and the volcano hike is definitely one of the most beautiful hikes you can do in your life!

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Bring a reusable water bottle with at least 1 litre capacity, you'll need it!
Default avatar
Henrik
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My journey to the Caribbean

Hi,
my name is Henrik and I participated in the 6-months-program in 2019/2020. I had one of the best times of my life in Richmond Vale Academy (RVA)! Starting off with a group of complete strangers from around the globe, sharing similar values in terms of ecology and sustainable living was exciting. Together, with other teams and the teachers we lived at the campus, which you can see on the Youtube Channel.

The program consists of theoretical and practical pieces in the beginning. Getting to know the techniques of ecological farming and using them at the schools garden were my first steps into work. On top of gardening, we could choose an area, in which we would like to work. Maintenance, Kitchen, Garden or Promotion are just some of them. I enjoyed working in the warm climate and making the life in the school possible. As everyone had its one responsibillity in the group we all highly rely on each other, which soon created a familiar atmosphere.

Apart from all that work the freetime activities are amazing too. Hiking the volcano for an incredible view with the team, going for a dive at our own divecenter, enjoying the local beach or visiting Kingstown made me falling in love with the island.
The biggest project, "The homegardens" came soon and my team including our teacher moved into a house in the village RVA had chosen to be covered by the program. Finally we could use all our knowledge to build gardens and teach the locals about the potential right in their backyard. Within 6 weeks we had built 10 gardens and developed relations in the village, that still exist! Seeing the results after a few months and the thankfulness of the clients were a great feeling. We knew, that we did sth. right!
After that project we continued working at the campus and met the knew team. It was always great to meet new people and they welcomed us after our trip. Some evenings we played games together or the sports team organised another beach olympics.

In the end I always look back on that time as a wonderful experience, that opened my eyes for other cultures, gave me a lot of new friends and another home overseas!

Go for it guys! You´ll we love it.

What was your funniest moment?
While we were walking to a swimming destination on the road, a man picked us up with his car. Somehow we fit in 4 extra people even though he already had his 3 children in the back. Two of us in the trunk, two in the backseat with three kids... tight, but absolutely hilarious :D. The people there are so nice to aech other. He didnt want to leave us on the road.
Read my full story
Default avatar
Finn
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Just a great time

Hello my name is Finn Widera and I am from Berlin in Germany.

In summer 2019 I finished school and didn't knew what to do.

Then one day I found Richmond Vale Academy on the Internet and was thrilled by it instantly.

6 Months in the caribbean on St.Vincent, doing something pertinent with nice people, thats what I expected from the program and that was what I get from it!

In the end of the program we all grew together as a big family and shared so much wonderful experiences.

The Vincy (short for vincentian) people are amazing and I had the possibility to live with a vincy family for nearly a month and it was such an intense experience, which expand my horizon. The culture of St Vincent coined me a lot in a positive way. Unfortunatly because of the Corona Virus I had to go home a few weeks earlier, which was very sad, but life goes on.

One day I will definetly come back to the beautiful Island St. Vincent and to Richmond Vale Academy.

What was your funniest moment?
I can't pick a single event, because they were so many of them, but most of the the funny moments I had with my Team in Richmond Vale Academy, because all the time it was so funny beeing around them.
Default avatar
Conor
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

6 month intern

What can I say. What an amazing experience. Directly involved with the fight against climate change, working in partnership with people who strive for the same. Gained experience in a range of diverse and exiting projects which you’re able to have a say in, such as Home garden construction, Solar installation and Biogas production, making it your own experience too. Great people doing great things in the most beautiful country, which you’re given a bit of time to travel around. Couldn’t recommend enough. Would go back in a heartbeat if I could.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
Gaining such good relationships with the locals - very in touch with the local community and helping from the ground up.
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Pirkka
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Healthy life in the Caribbean

I stayed at Richmond Vale Academy in St Vincent and the Grenadines for a time period of six weeks. With an international team much younger than myself. Never felt more healthy and live. Lost some 10 kg and after returning had to put down my thyroid medicine. The diet, fixed supper times, own vegetables, fruit, eggs and meat. A lot of outdoor, working in the garden and adventures in the jungle made the trick. Not to mention the scenery, sunsets, diving and all other beauty around. Still the most memorable are the people at RVA and at the whole island nation.

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Niklas
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

6 months in paradise with a lot of really cool people

I really enjoyed my six month stay at the Richmond Vale Academy. The programm was interessting. I Likes working with the people who live there and learning about their style of working and living. I am really proud of the two homegaedens me and my Team were able to build. But besides the project I had a really nice time there as well. The Island is extremly beautiful and there is a lot to explore. But for me the ost important thing were the people I lived with. All the people I met there we're really nice and interessting people. In the end we all became a big Family. I can really recommend the programm if you like to live in paradise and meet new interessting people.

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Miguel
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Climate Activism Program

The 6-month Climate Compliance Program at Richmond Vale Academy is a very intense, but highly rewarding program.
We initially learned about permaculture from amazing professionals and teachers and then put it into practice both at the Academy and, later, in a project in the local community.
If you are looking for a meaningful, hands on project, and if you don´t mind getting your hands dirty this is the place to go.
SVG is a beautiful place with amazing people.
Finally, there is also the option to take a scuba course, which I did and highly recommend.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Be ready for hard work and strict schedules, but also enjoy and get to know as much as you can of the island and the people. Use every Sunday possible!
Default avatar
Katrine
7/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Intense but very rewarding, and memories to last a life time. I still think about my time there every day

Overall, I really enjoyed my 6 months in St. Vincent and RVA. The staff was really helpful before my arrival and when I arrived at the school, the students and staff made me feel at home right away.
Before you go, you should know:
-It's an intense (but very rewarding) program - 6 work days per week with Sundays off.
-There's a lot of physical labour, which I enjoyed very much.
-The teachers are more like group leaders so don't expect the program to be highly academic. It's more about practical training - how to build things, how to manage projects etc.
-You work a lot in groups, so be a good team player!

If you're up for a demanding and rewarding 6 months, learning what development work is outside of the textbooks, you should definitely go! What are you waiting for?

If you would like to ask me questions, you're welcome to write me on Facebook: Katrine Winther Erlendsson

What was your funniest moment?
One time, I visited TreTre's (school chef at RVA) farm, where she gave me pig belly soup - and she wouldn't tell me what it was before I tasted it, because she knew I would think it was gross!