Sunday, 22 March 2009

E-peace, Students and Wildlife Conservation - Practical and Campaigning

Sat 7th March

It is a whole year since I acted as a resource person for Leeds University for their First Year Field Course in the Dales in their role play session.

To help them were a quarryman, a farmer, a walker , a local, several others - and myself as an environmental activist.

I was pleased to be asked back again, and this time they held their day at Grassington.

As I understood it my group of 12 students would be representing an environment campaigning group (with a made up name E-Peace) in a role play situation. I, as a member of our local wildlife group "Craven Conservation Group" had been invited to answer their questions in preparation for their task.

They showed me their excellent poster. - I thought the aims on the poster were good.

They had visited this website, to last year's page .. through a web search for E-Peace. (Brilliant - all hits welcome -Thanks!

I belong to so many environment groups and wanted to get so much information across - I had produced some photocopied material - that I talked (in response to questions) rapidly for about five minutes till I could see it was getting rather much for some of them (igo - eys glazed over) - So I asked questions instead -

"Do you belong to any conservation organisations?" I asked.

One girl did. She did practical world with a voluntary group at the university - cutting down trees etc. I had a really goood chat with her and it was good to see the other students interested in what she did.

"Are you interested in conservation or did you just get put in this group?" I asked.

"The latter."

"Are you members of the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust?" I asked - After all Leeds in in Yorkshire. Zero uptake. "Well you should all go away and join". (Was that too bossy? - and let's face it, I only started joioning such organisations quite a few years after university..

They asked about otters, they asked "What would you do if you could improve the Dales for conservation... Hmmm...

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