Left photo: The signage at the entrance of the LEARN Ecopark in WWRRDEC, Baguio City. Right Photo: The LEARN Ecopark being maintained by the WWRRDEC staff.

Since its establishment, the Learning Ecopark for Advocating Resources and Nature (LEARN) has been providing stakeholders, from grade schoolers to professionals, the opportunity to learn and discover the ERDB technologies such as: soil and water conservation measures, tree health assessment and tree surgery, tiger grass farming under Benguet pine (Pinus kesiya) stands, apiary and science-based information on diverse bamboo species, trees, orchids, etc.

Specifically, LEARN has nine different components that showcase science-based information on the diversity of flora, namely orchidarium, bambusetum, pesticidal and dye producing plants, ornamental plants, medicinal and essential oil, cacti, fernery, arboretum and palmetum.

An initiative taken by the Watershed and Water Resources Research, Development and Extension Center (WWRRDEC), formerly ERDS, DENR-CAR, the learning park was established without funding for which the Office and its employees were awarded the 2006 CSC PAG-ASA Group Award Semi-finalist at the national level.

The vagaries of time and weather, however, had taken its toll on the ecopark. It is in need of rehabilitation. Client satisfaction survey showed that clients recommend the improvement of the area.

In February 2020, the Center Head, Ms. Helen A. Maddumba, signed a special order assigning all WWRRDEC personnel to specific components which they will enhance and maintain as part of their health and wellness activities.

To date, clean and green activities in the learning ecopark are being conducted for two hours every Friday.

The move by the Center to improve and rehabilitate the LEARN will make many stakeholders happy. Among these are students and pupils from different schools in Baguio City, who make up the highest number of visitors to the LEARN annually.

According to the school heads, the visit of schoolchildren to the LEARN Eco-park of WWRRDEC helps their students interact with nature for many of them are city-born and have yet to see the plants. Margeline Q. Diano, WWRRDEC