Tent Camp: A New Way to Foster Environmental Awareness Among All Ages

Author: Firuza Tadjimova

September 8, 2023
Photo: UNDP Uzbekistan

Amidst the breathtaking mountains near Yangiabad in the Tashkent region, a tent camp is sprouting up on a lush meadow. Elena Alekseeva, a proud Yangiabad resident and the driving force behind this endeavor, has spent numerous years organizing ecological and historical tours throughout Uzbekistan.

Elena, sipping tea brewed over an open fire, explains her mission, saying,

"I want to introduce children and young adults to the wonders of nature. I firmly believe that this forms the bedrock for cultivating knowledge and values related to our environment."

Photo: UNDP Uzbekistan

She continues, "Our tailored programme is designed to enhance the mental and physical capabilities of children while providing a well-deserved escape for adults from their daily routines."

Over the course of twelve days, the camp offers an array of activities, including board games, archery, boomerang throwing, trekking alongside shallow sai (small river) with climbing gear, and an educational component that delves into the world of plants (both poisonous and medicinal), animals, and insects.

The concept of a tent camp had been brewing in Elena's mind for a long time, but bringing it to fruition seemed elusive. It was only through the training provided by an EU-funded UNDP project that Elena refined her business expertise.

She reflects, "These training sessions taught me how to craft a solid business plan. For an extended period, dedicated mentors guided me on fine-tuning the plan to suit real-world conditions, offering invaluable advice on optimization. This, coupled with my great desire to do something interesting and useful, led me to success."

Elena submitted her meticulously prepared business plan to compete in a contest organized by the project, and her dedication bore fruit as she emerged victorious, securing the necessary equipment for her tent camp.

With precision, Elena and her team set up the tents, and she beams with enthusiasm as she describes the camp's intricacies.

Photo: UNDP Uzbekistan
"I firmly believe that my business will play a role in mitigating unemployment in our town while providing our youth with meaningful leisure options. In the future, I hope that promoting ecotourism in our region will reduce excessive livestock grazing and bolster environmental consciousness among our younger generations, thus paving the way for a brighter future for our children."
Elena Alekseeva