On Valentine’s Day, 2015, Sinead Stewart makes her way to the El Socorro Centre for Wildlife Conservation to volunteer. The Centre, which was founded in 2005 by Ricardo Meade and Gia Narinesingh, has a mission of conserving the wildlife of Trinidad and Tobago though education.
While they also rehabilitate injured animals, and house ones who are unable to return to the wild, education remains the primary objective. As such, the Centre regularly conducts interactive, wildlife displays, and invites schools and children’s camps to conduct field trips to the Centre’s compound in Freeport, Caroni.
Those resident animals then serve the role of ‘animal ambassadors’, allowing children and students to become fascinated by local animals, develop a fondness and perhaps a protective attitude toward them, and also be taught about the unintentional harm that might be done to wildlife and the environment through human activity.