By Alfred Ole Mepukori. What a convention! I'm back home from Colombia where Cecile Tang and I attended the 28th InternationalCongress for Conservation Biology (ICCB), arranged by the Society for Conservation Biology (SCB). Sitting on a youth panel, it was a unique opportunity for each one of us to share our voice regarding our personal journey in conservation, and I was able to bring insights from my forest community in Kenya.
What united us was our belief in youth engagement for conservation, and the importance of including youth for long-lasting conservation impacts.
'Budding and perennial conservationists need to feel inspired and continue in the profession, not put off by pessimism.'
For too long news about nature and the environment has focused on sad stories and spiraling statistics, it is time for a new narrative, conservation works and there are tonnes of positive stories out there. The #ConservationOptimism movement is spearheading this change and Y4WC is right along with it. in April 2017 Y4WC delegates presented a interactive workshop on the importance of diversity in conservation for positive change and a better world, at the Conservation Optimism Summit in London.
A core belief of Y4WC is that the world should ‘Listen to the young voices’ not simply because youth are underrepresented in conservation and international conventions, but because we are already making positive impacts in our communities and may have new solutions and perspectives on conservation matters. Swetha Stotra Bhashyam representing Y4WC at the United Nations HQ in New York.
In December 2016, four members of Y4WC headed to Cancun’s United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) CoP13. The CBD is a multilateral treaty whose objective is to develop national strategies for the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, and we were there to learn how young conservationists can be more involved in global negotiations that affect us all.
The time came for the big trip ti Johannesburg, the most vibrant City of South Africa! All delegates, experts contributors and guest from all over the world finally came together for the Youth Forum for People and Wildlife
It's been 10 days since I had to say goodbye to 34 new best friends - the courageous, gorgeous and dedicated youth delegates of IFAW's Youth Forum for People and Wildlife. Despite having a big hole in my heart I am more inspired than ever - the combination of ideas and passion coming from these people (and many others all over the world) will ensure a sustainable and prosperous future for Mother Earth.
The launch of Youth For Wildlife Conservation, our founding article written by Adam Miller. “The reasonable [person] adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore, all progress depends on the unreasonable.” – George Benard Shaw, 1903