World Environment Day (WED) is celebrated widely, in over 100 countries, on 5 June each year.
WED is a global platform for raising awareness and for taking action towards positive environmental outcomes.
‘Go Wild for Life’ is this year’s WED theme. Here at Seed Harvest Spoon we have been thinking about this theme, from a slightly different angle, after receiving a little gem in our inbox this week.
For Seed Harvest Spoon, this year’s WED theme is the perfect prompt to reflect on the importance for children to be in nature and have the chance to ‘go (just a little bit) wild’.
As a global day of awareness, WED presses us to think about the big environmental challenges. As adults we know the impact of global warming, loss of biodiversity, reduced habitat, and rising ocean temperatures. We understand why it is important that we take proactive steps to make a difference. For most of us, the impetus to take action is driven by a clear vision of what will be lost if we don’t.
As children though, the experience is different. The world is something they are still learning about and as they learn they will develop their individual priorities and values based on the experiences they are exposed to.
At Seed Harvest Spoon a priority for us, in inspiring a lifelong commitment to protecting our natural environment, is supporting children to discover a sense of wonder and awe about the natural world. In our workshops children play with soil, get their hands dirty, go searching for insects, plant a seed and watch it grow!
They are, at least for a short time, immersed in nature.
Our inspiration boost for this week (and for WED) was a quote from renowned and respected environmental champion, Bill McKibben. Both uplifting and timely it serves as a reminder on the importance of letting children ‘go wild’ and its lifelong impact.
"...the goal is to get kids to fall in love with the world around them, and you don't really fall in love with a terminally ill planet…(we should help children) to understand what a beautiful place this world is. Once they figure that out, they will be its defenders."
We couldn’t agree more!
So with this in mind, let your kids ‘go wild’ this WED. Turn off the screens, take the kids outdoors, let them get their hands dirty and encourage them to find one thing in nature that makes them say “wow”.
Author: Lisa Whatley
Seed Harvest Spoon Development & Grants Consultant
Copyright 2016: Seed Harvest Spoon Education Foundation Ltd.