From exploration through operation and closure, we seek to build trust-based, lasting relationships with communities and Indigenous Peoples, focused one respecting human rights, and creating shared benefits in the regions where we operate. In Andacollo, Chile, Teck sponsors the Mesa Comunidad Andacollina Teck (CAT Board). The project Huerta Educacional (Educational Garden) was one of the projects funded by the Mesa Comunidad Andacollina Teck (CAT) Fund, a fund designed to improve the well-being of the people and organizations in the communities around Carmen de Andacollo.
The Mesa Comunidad Andacollina
The CAT Board was formed to promote dialogue with and participation of the Andacollo community in local development planning. The Board includes members from 15 organizations representing the social, political, and economic activities of the Andacollo community. Through the CAT Board, the Andacollo municipality and Teck’s Carmen de Andacollo Operations collaborate on sustainable development for the community and surrounding areas. The CAT Board oversees an annual project competition, open to the public and funded by Teck, to identify sustainable development initiatives. Since 2018, Teck has committed annual donations of up to US$1 million and has funded nearly 90 projects to improve the quality of life for residents within the community.
Huerta Educacional (Educational Garden)
The project Huerta Educacional was selected after careful evaluation based on eligibility criteria, as well as through a vote by the citizens of Andacollo. The initiative seeks to create an outdoor educational space to provide children in the area an opportunity to develop environmental values within an inclusive and respectful learning environment. The program provides agricultural tools such as wheelbarrows, shovels and child-friendly rakes, in addition to the construction of a greenhouse-type garden, solar lighting, a planting area, a water pond for irrigation, a vermicomposter, compost bins, seedlings and seeds.
More than 100 children from the Pepitas de Oro kindergarten in Andacollo in Central Chile are utilizing this new outdoor educational space.
María Camila Fernández, educator in charge of the project, explains that “this project has allowed us to expand from a small orchard to a beautiful garden. We are now the first kindergarten in the commune with an educational garden of this magnitude.”
Roxana Espinoza, Teck Carmen de Andacollo Community Management Specialist, also expressed her joy at the construction of the garden, highlighting that "the importance of this project is that it not only considers education as traditional knowledge, but also links kids with the environment. Through this initiative, professionals will teach children about the life cycle of a plant, promote healthy eating and, strengthen environmental learning through practice.”
Read more about Teck’s commitment to Communities and Indigenous Peoples.