I. How it started? Who were the pioneers?
The Eco-Camp was conceptualized when LIFE participated in the De La Salle Zobel’s yearly camp-out. It was fueled by two goals which are (1) The Lasallian Ministry Action Plan #7 of Stewardship of God’s Creation and (2) The Philippine Lasallian Convocation Resolution 2.4 on Environmental Concerns and Advocacy. The Federation of Lasallian Institutions (FLI) was enthusiastic on the idea of having an Eco-Camp that would gather the Lasallian family.
A National Committee was then formed co-chaired by Engr. Ben Eusebio (LIFE’s Executive Director) and Br. Dennis Magbanua FSC. Mr. Tom Veloso of Lasallian Youth Commission (LYC) and Mr. Delfin Warren (Chairman of LIFE’s BOT) were also relevant to the realization and implementation of Eco-Camp.
January 28-30, 2005 marked the first Lasallian Eco-Camp. It was held simultaneously on different parts of the Philippines. The Luzon camp (tertiary level) was held in Mt. Makiling and was attended by 168 participants. A high school activity headed by Ms. Lilia Vengco was held, on the other hand, in La Salle College Antipolo (LSCA). The Visayas group took place in Kanlaon Volcano Park; while, Mindanao camp was in La Salle Academy (LSA) and Initao Forest Reserve.
After this, Eco-camp became a yearly activity. It had replaced the LS2K celebration where Lasallian schools gathered in the spirit of camaraderie, unity, and community. The success of Eco-Camp has proven its ability to achieve all of LS2K’s objectives and more.
II. Lasallian Schools involved in Eco-Camp
Luzon Lasallian Eco-Camp is divided into two levels: the tertiary and the basic education level. Schools participating in the tertiary level are as follows:
|A. De La Salle University - Manila||DLSUM|
|B. De La Salle - College of St. Benilde||DLS-CSB|
|C. De La Salle - Araneta University||DLSAU|
|D. De La Salle University - Dasmarinas||DLSU-D|
|E. De La Salle Health Sciences Institute
|F. De La Salle - Canlubang||DLSU-C|
|G. De La Salle Lipa||DLSL|
The following Lasallian Schools participates on the basic education level:
|A. De La Salle Araneta University
|B. De La Salle - Canlubang||DLSU-C|
|C. De La Salle Lipa||DLSL|
|D. La Salle Greenhills||LSGH|
|E. La Salle Antipolo||LSCA|
|F. De La Salle Santiago Zobel||DLS-Z|
During the first Eco-Camp, Lasallian Schools in the Visayas and Mindanao areas had also participated. The University of St. La Salle (USLS) and St. Joseph’s High School (SJHS) in Bacolod composed the Visayas camp. La Salle Academy (LSA), Immaculate Conception College – La Salle (ICC-LS) known today as La Salle University – Ozamiz (LSU), and De La Salle – John Bosco College (DLS-JBC) were the participating schools in the Mindanao camp.
III. What are the benefits of Eco-Camp to the Lasllian Family
Eco-Camp’s objective was not only to gather the Lasallian family and instill in them the importance of unity and camaraderie through socializing; but, more importantly, to make the participants be aware and educated of their environment through various fun and enjoyable camping activities.
As what Meryll Yan had said in her article National Eco-Camp – A First in Many Ways, “the brand of environmental awareness espoused in the Eco-Camp is very simple and applicable to daily life.” Participants learned practical things and it stimulates their brain through giving them time to think of ways to improve the environmental situations in their respective homes and schools.