Cover Image
close this bookTeaching Conservation in Developing Nations (Peace Corps)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentAbout this manual...
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View the documentForeword
View the documentIntroduction
close this folderChapter 1: The self-contained conservation education center
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View the documentPlanning
View the documentThe building
View the documentLandscaping
View the documentThe nature trail
View the documentConservation demonstration area
View the documentOutdoor exhibits
View the documentExhibits
View the documentSigns and labels
View the documentThe conservation education center in shared facilities
View the documentSource materials - Chapter 1
close this folderChapter 2: Conservation education in a school
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close this folderA school conservation education outline
View the documentFirst Year: Looking at Your Environment
View the documentSecond Year: Change in the Natural World
View the documentThird Yeah: How Environment Differ
View the documentFourth Yeah: Talking Care of Natural Resources
View the documentFifth Year: Use of Natural Resources
View the documentSixth Year: Responsibility for Environmental Conservation
View the documentConservation science fair
View the documentSource materials - Chapter 2
close this folderChapter 3: Conservation education in a health center
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View the documentNutrition
View the documentSanitation
View the documentHealth
View the documentSource material - Chapter 3
close this folderChapter 4: Conservation education in an agricultural extension center
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View the documentSoil conservation
View the documentErosion
View the documentErosion control methods
View the documentResults of erosion
View the documentControl of nutrient loss
View the documentSource materials - Chapter 4
close this folderChapter 5: Conservation education in a community center
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View the documentCooperative programs
View the documentLeadership training
View the documentThe community environment
View the documentSource materials - Chapter 5
close this folderAppendix A: Exhibit and study materials
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View the documentVisitor participation exhibits
View the documentSuggested exhibits
View the documentCollections for exhibit and study
View the documentVisual aids for exhibits
View the documentDisplay poster - Life pyramid/food chain
View the documentIntroduction to concepts
View the documentConcepts about the ecosystem
View the documentConcepts about populations
View the documentPopulation poster
View the documentConcepts about water, soil and air
View the documentStudies about soil
View the documentStudies about water
View the documentStudies about the sun's energy
View the documentStudies about plants
View the documentSource materials - Appendix A
close this folderAppendix B: Nature Trails
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View the documentPurpose of a Natural Trail
View the documentCharacteristic of a Nature Trail
View the documentConstructing a nature trail
View the documentFeatures proposed for labeling and explanation along a nature trail in South East Asia
View the documentSource materials - Appendix B
close this folderAppendix C: Landscaping
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View the documentSuggestions
View the documentCompost
View the documentTransplanting
View the documentHow to select and collect seeds
View the documentGrowing seeds
View the documentSuggested site plan
View the documentSource materials - Appendix C
close this folderAppendix D: Signs, labels and guides
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View the documentSigns
View the documentLabels
View the documentGuides
View the documentA suggested nature trail guide for Guatopo national park, Venezuela
View the documentSource materials - Appendix D
close this folderAppendix E: Public facilities
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View the documentRest stops
View the documentPicnic areas
View the documentLatrine facilities
View the documentA calabash washstand
View the documentParking
View the documentSource materials - Appendix E
close this folderAppendix F: Live animals
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View the documentThe collection
close this folderAquariums
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View the documentA freshwater aquarium
View the documentA marine aquarium
View the documentTerrariums
View the documentAnts
View the documentEarthworms
View the documentCardboard insect box
View the documentMammal cages
View the documentAn outdoor bird attraction
View the documentSource materials - Appendix F
close this folderAppendix G: Endangered species
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentA school program
View the documentA community program
View the documentEndangered animals of selected countries
View the documentSource materials - Appendix G
View the documentSelected organizations concerned with conservation education
View the documentSelected environmental research centers
View the documentGlossary


The results of malnutrition on a nation's development cannot be ignored. When a large portion of the population is unable to realize its potential due to improper physical development or disease caused by poor diet, the loss to the nation is great. The periods of infancy and childhood require sizeable resources from both the family and the nation in terms of food and health care. When a child dies in adolescence, his/her use of those resources is totally lost. If he/she does not have a reasonably long or useful working life, again the food and health care used in his development will not be fully repaid, and the nation is losing a valuable natural resource.

The World Health Organization believes that protein calorie deficiency is the greatest public health problem in the world today. A health center conservation project that could be developed in cooperation with an agricultural agency would demonstrate how to develop better soil, how to choose an acceptable protein-rich plant food to grow, and how to prepare it for eating. (Protein-rich soybeans might be a possible crop to introduce). You will need a piece of land for a demonstration garden (see Appendix C for growing information and Chapter 5 for agricultural information).

If other kinds of diet deficiencies are an important problem in your area, a demonstration garden could grow those plant foods which would eliminate the deficiencies. You would have to work with the agricultural agent to identify which plants would grow well, and would also be culturally acceptable to these garden demonstrations. If the climate is suitable, papaya trees could be introduced to provide an easily grown source of vitamins A and C.

Another possibility might be the introduction of fish culture through a program following the Peace Corps/VITA manual, Freshwater Fish Pond Culture and Management Fish are an important protein-rich food and to grow fish in ponds is a more certain way of supplying fish for food than trying to catch fish from lakes, rivers or streams.

Nutrition education can be supported through the schools where children can learn the basic principles of good nutrition. They could grow fresh vegetables or fruits in a school demonstration garden, which they could take home to eat. A government-sponsored food program might be available to provide school children with a nutritionally balanced meal each day.

If floods or erosion are a frequent cause of crop loss in your area, you should encourage efforts in flood and erosion control by farmers, with help from agricultural agents, which would improve the local food supply. (See Chapter 5).

Where food supplies are threatened by loss during preservation and storage, improvement such as that detailed in the Peace Corps/VITA manual, Small Farm Grain Storage (see Chapter Sources), should be actively encouraged and supported by cooperative efforts with agricultural agents. Proper storage can reduce grain loss from 33% to 3% thus making an increased quantity of food available.

In urban areas, nutritional problems are intensified by the fact that consumer goods compete for whatever money is earned, and often the family diet loses out in this competition. An approach to this problem could be to illustrate, by using a flannelgraph story in the health center, that the balanced nutritious diet improves weight, muscular strength, endurance, and capacity to work as well as resistance to disease All of these qualities would tend to increase a person's ability to compete successfully in his/her environment.

Flannelghaph demonstration

Perhaps you could locate some land within the urban area which could be transformed into a community garden for supplementary food needs.

The health center should actively promote food cultivation as a health conservation measure. The health center must be the leader in suggesting and developing ideas to improve the community's nutrition. For an excellent book on the subject, see Learning Better Nutrition by Jean Ritchie/FAO (See Chapter Sources).