An Ohio University student from Delaware County will share her experiences from a study abroad program this weekend at her home church.
Grace Fuchs, a member of Zion United Church of Christ, is scheduled to speak to the congregation during the 10 a.m. service on Sunday, July 30.
“I was privileged to attend an Ohio study abroad program in the Balkans during the summer of 2017,” Fuchs said. “This trip greatly contributed to my understanding of environmental problems in an international context, exposing me to the realm of environmental security and conflict resolution. The program also highlighted the ideas of international resource management, ecotourism, and community-led sustainable development.”
Fuchs said she traveled through Kosovo, Montenegro and Albania, a journey that would’ve been nearly impossible two decades ago due to strife in that region.
I was able to learn about these ideas and see them being implemented in practice while backpacking through the beautiful Balkan mountain region and staying with locals in villages along the way,” she said. “Seeing how the countries have come behind environmental conservation and its potential for being a peacemaking tool in the region is incredible.”
Fuchs also noted that the trip gave her “the opportunity to see these nations overcome immense challenges and push towards a more sustainable and just future for their citizens.”
“Addressing environmental resource allocation at an international level is only becoming increasingly relevant to global affairs as more nations are experiencing resource shortages and other environmental stresses due to the impacts of climate change,” she said. “This trip took me to a beautiful place, introduced me to a wonderful culture, and showed me that sustainable solutions are truly possible at a local, regional, and international level when strong leaders champion the needs of the people and the environment.”
Zion United Church of Christ is located at 51 W. Central Ave. in Delaware.