There is a new crowdsourced funding drive on behalf of the nonprofit, GIS: YES (which stands for Youth and Educational Solutions). Geoporter seeks to educate local residents in geospatial technologies such as GIS and GPS in order to better their communities. Geoporter stands for Geospatial Educators Opportunities for Partnership Outreach Research and Training.
The pilot location took place in Bahia Ballena, Costa Rica and the state goals are:
- Educate, train, and build capacity of residents in Bahía Ballena and other coastal communities to apply GIS and GPS to investigate, better understand, and take action in environmentally-based community identified projects.
- Engage teachers and students in formal and informal education settings in project-based learning using geospatial technologies to enhance their communities and apply skills to future paths.
- Empower communities to apply acquired geospatial and other technological skills to investigate their own community resources and contribute to solving critical global issues.
Over the course of a year in Bahia Ballena, Geoporter was able to teach 10% of the community in how to use GIS and GPS to identify and map out local concerns. The residents have participated in projects such as mapping daily humpback whale sightings in Marino Ballena National Park and collecting GIS data about trash collected from local beaches and streets.
The efforts of the Geoporter team has generated interest from other communities in Costa Rica and Peru. To be able to expand the efforts of the Geoporter program, a funding campaign has been set up at Indiegogo. Those interested in contributing can do so until December 28, 2013.