Name: Dr. Gerardo Avalos
Position: SFS Center Director
Program: Sustainable Development Studies, Costa Rica
The Center for Sustainable Development Studies is pleased to announce that its farm has achieved the Rainforest Alliance Certification™ awarded by the Rainforest Alliance.
This culminates a process that began in January 2010. With this certification, the Center ensures that the production of mangoes and oranges in its farm will be free of chemicals, that crops will be grown in a context of respect for the environment, where biodiversity is protected, where the rights of workers are protected and respected, and where local communities benefit from the Center´s research and outreach programs.
The certification process has allowed us to improve academic, administrative, and farm management processes through the implementation of the principles of the Norm of the Sustainable Agriculture Network.
Rainforest Alliance goals and philosophy is consistent with the goals and values of the SFS Center in Costa Rica. This is a nonprofit organization, a pioneer in forest certification and sustainable farms.
With the certification, the entire Center and its farm becomes a powerful educational tool for students, the staff and the immediate community. The nature of the certification is integrative, and looks not only at production processes, but at the role and community footprint of our Center in Atenas, and Costa Rica.
Success in achieving this certification demonstrates the commitment of the Center in the formulation of alternatives that promote clean farming systems, the conservation of biodiversity, the enhancement of sustainable human development, and the creation of social and environmental standards that are ecologically sound.
The Certification is a great achievement, and happens right on time to celebrate the 20 anniversary of The School for Field Studies in Costa Rica. The SFS program started out traveling in various locations within Costa Rica. Since 1991 the Center has been established in Atenas, where we are known as SFS Centro de Estudios sobre Desarrollo Sostenible. In these 20 years, SFS has helped to widen the horizons and potentiate the lives of over 2,000 students by providing them with rich and diverse academic programs.
This is a great way to start out the 2011 fall semester.