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As you peel back layers of this unique culture, volunteer with local organizations to create a better life for children in the country’s struggling populations., the Philippines’ largest and northernmost island, you’ll volunteer on urban projects, aiding and interacting with children of Manila in a variety of ways.Prepare and distribute school lunches at a nutritious feeding program.In both Home Bases, students will share rooms with roommates and have access to Western style bathrooms and hot-water showers.Its existence had been known of for centuries, but researchers have found a rare giant shipworm for the first time buried in a lagoon in the Philippines.The giant shipworm, or , belongs to the common shipworm family that have tusk-like shells which they use to burrow in wood, ingesting and digesting wood particles.But unlike its shipworm cousins, the Kuphus' enormous size and unusual anatomy, and the fact that adult specimens are found burrowing head-down in mud, set it apart from other members of the family. Instead, they rely on beneficial bacteria that live in their gills that make food for them.Hike up a volcano to Lake Taal, one of the iconic vistas of Luzon island.With thousands of miles of beautiful coastline, a Philippines trip wouldn’t be complete without a beach day—spend your last day enjoying On this program, students will split their time between two main areas, all located in the northernmost province of the Philippines: Quezon City (Week 1) and San Pablo (Week 2).
With a live giant shipworm finally in hand, the research team huddled around Daniel Distel, the report's chief author, as he carefully washed the sticky mud caked to the outside of the giant shipworm shell and tapped off the outer cap, revealing the creature living inside."I was awestruck when I first saw the sheer immensity of this bizarre animal," Marvin Altamia, a researcher from the University of the Philippines said.Tour the colonial town to learn about Spain’s 300-year occupation, and how it has influenced Philippine culture.Then, learn from indigenous experts, and the struggle to preserve the last remnants of traditions that flourished before Spanish colonialism.In the Philippines, mountains, volcanoes and crater lakes beckon exploration beyond the big city.Tour Lake Pandin aboard a handmade bamboo raft, and enjoy lunch under a traditional thatched hut.