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Southampton University Panama Environmental Brigade

Help us to provide sustainability awareness to the people of Panama

  • £4,229

    pledged of £6,000

    • 48


    • 0


This project received pledges on Sun 10 May 2015

What is Global Brigades?

Global Brigades is a student-led volunteering organisation. We plan 10 day brigades to communities in Latin America (Panama, Honduras, Nicaragua), so that students from our university can have the chance to a unique volunteering experience and help different communities develop sustainably!! There are 9 different skill-based brigades, which all contribute to different problems of communities.

Our project

Our aim, as part of the first ever chapter of Global Brigades at the University of Southampton, is to travel to Panama this June to educate local people about sustainable agricultural practices that help both the environment and the local community. We’ll work with rural families and community leaders to implement reforestation and sustainable agricultural infrastructures.

Meet the first team of Southampton Brigaders

George (Chapter Leader)

Final year mechanical engineering student with a focus on sustainable energy systems. Following a water brigade in Ghana looking to spend his graduation trip spreading sustainability awareness across the world.


First year marine biology student. Passionate and with great knowledge about sustainability, she is looking forward to transmit to the community in Panama. Also, a real master of words!! Get the personal thank you note reward and you’ll see…


First year Geophysics student and very enthusiastic about empowering people and supporting sustainable activities. In addition, a film enthusiast and director of our pitch!


First year biomedical sciences student. In her spare time she plays the guitar and takes on textiles-based work. “Environmental sustainability needs a passion for learning and forward planning”. Skills that she has acquired through her studies and personal interests.


First year Spanish and Portuguese student. Her excellent knowledge of Spanish and communication skills have constituted her as the official translator of our team!


First year Spanish and Portuguese student as well. Started promoting sustainability through recycling at a local level and is now ready to participate in our international project to help the environment!


Second year Accounting & Finance student.  The life and soul of our group!! Helping us to put some numbers into perpective and helping us identify the cost breakdown presented below.

Our story…

How did we hear about Global Brigades?

Two years ago, George joined a water brigade in Srafa Aboano, a community in Ghana, with limited access to clean water resources! During his brigade he built a cement rainwater harvester to provide clean water to a household. The structure has a lifetime of 20 years and as a result the amount of gratitude shown by the local people inspired him to promote volunteering within Southampton and establish the first ever chapter of Global Brigades in the University of Southampton.

(George and his new friends in Srafa Aboano, Ghana)

Why are we so passionate about our project?

Panama, over the past decades, loses more than 1% of its forest cover every year!!! There has been a decline in forest cover from 80% in 1950s to less than 40% today. Traditional agricultural techniques result in degradation of land making it unsuitable for future crop growth. These unsustainable practices put strains on rural communities, who rely on farming as their main source of income.

We all saw the Doritos ad that acted as an inspiration to travel to Panama and help stop the exploitation of natural resources and land. To travel to Embera Purù, a community in Eastern Panama that will welcome our help, and purchase the equipment required for our projects we need your support!!

Global Brigades’ volunteers have brought infrastructure and empowered more than 500,000 community members in Honduras, Panama, Ghana & Nicaragua. This will be the first ever chapter of Global Brigades in the University of Southampton.

We are confident that with your support we can complete our project and act as a spark to motivate more students from Southampton to join the movement, volunteer in the future and help make the world a better place.

Where will the money go?

All money raised from your donations will go directly to our Global Brigades fund to help each member of the Brigades team to travel to Panama. Donations will help to pay for:

  • £650 for the Brigade per person
  • £600 for air travel per person

We aim to raise at least the Brigade costs and a great percentage of the travel expenses!

Environmental Brigades uses the contributions to purchase reforestation supplies, trees, and materials to build greenhouses.

Brigade logistics (Budget: £2400) Includes items such as lodging, food, GB staff, transportation, pharmacy utilities, compound expenses, compounds staff, warehouse assistants.

Project continuation and sustainable transitions (Budget: £800) Includes items such as Community Development/R&E staff, community follow-up, data informatics system patient referral system, community health workers (CHW) programme.

In-country administration (Budget: £750) Includes office fees, staff salaries, etc.

Global Brigades Association Fee (Budget: £600) Includes international programming, student leadership conferences. Among many other benefits.

Note: Any additional donations will go towards future Global Brigades projects.

We've got some great rewards to say 'thank you'!

To thank you for your generosity, we've got some great rewards. All of our rewards are listed on the right hand side of the page! Pick your favourite to help make our project happen!!

Follow us to find out how we're doing!

Visit our Facebook page to keep up to date with our progress!

Thank you for your support!