Argentine teens travel to Falklands in high school graduation trip

The Ensenada group of students who are scheduled to arrive in the Falklands this Saturday.

BUENOS AIRES – Eighteen Argentine high school graduates from a Catholic institution in the port-town of Ensenada, next to La Plata should be arriving in the Falkland Islands this Saturday after connecting with the LATAM flight in Rio Gallegos.

The trip was planned and agreed two years ago and since then they have been collecting funds with different activities to make possible a lifetime’s dream.

According to local media reports, the group is chaperoned by three teachers, the sister of a soldier from Ensenada fallen during the 1982 conflict, plus three Malvinas Veterans from La Plata’s grouping, Antonio Reda, Eduardo González and Claudio Guzmán.

The graduates will try to capture the significance in situ of the conflict and its consequences, which happened when none of them was born.

“For us it is not a graduates’ end of the year visit, it’s an institutional trip which belongs to an institutional project. It was born out of the necessity for the new generations to be protagonists” explained Karina Seibane who is the pastoral coordinator of the week long trip.

Apparently among the many tours and activities, the students will honor the only three Islanders, civilians, killed during the conflict during a British bombardment in Stanley, They are carrying a rose from silversmith Pallarods, made out of cartridge cases, for the ceremony.

The teenagers will keep their community and friends informed of their visit and experiences in Facebook, “De Ensenada a Malvinas”, where they have also been reporting about their efforts to collect the trip’s funding and expectations.

“I’m very excited and want to know more about history”, said Mateo Quaresimale, who added “hopefully we will understand, but also I’m sure I’ll come back far more mature”. His mother who went to see him off admitted that when the project was presented originally, “it was really something very strong”, but “we supported them all along”.

“I think it’s going to be difficult at first because here we are accustomed to say that the Islands are Argentine, but when we arrive we’ll be seeing a different flag” Lautaro Reyes was quoted. “But we are not on a hate program, it would be great if we could meet boys and girls of our age, to find out how they feel about something that is so important for us”. He hopes they can establish some sort of friendship with the Islanders.

Argentine high school graduates normally celebrate with an end of year trip, obviously depending on parents’ pockets. Those who can afford it like to experience Disneyworld, Mexico or even somewhere in Europe, but for the majority it is to Bariloche, the mountain resort in Patagonia. And now it seems they have added the Falklands to the options.—MercoPress