2019 Young Darwin Scholars
Every year we welcome 15 young people as ‘Young Darwin Scholars’ on a specially created scholarship, for 16-17 year olds particularly motivated by the natural world. 2019 has seen a truly inspirational group come together from all across the UK, united by their dedication to igniting change in attitudes and their motivation to take charge of their futures.
A fantastic opportunity was shared by all who participated from Saturday 17th to Wednesday 21st August, from tutors, visiting speakers and to the Young Darwins themselves. Diverse excursions, ranging from visiting mines to canoeing down rivers as well as time spent learning from experts, through talks and hands on experiences, all add to extending their interests. Notably they have all been able to inspire and learn from each other, connecting through their passion and drive to create a wider understanding of the natural world.
The week with the FSC provides the group with guidance and support, to help direct their vision and broaden their knowledge, from species identification to how they can actively get involved with their local communities.
Tallulah will return to Wiltshire with plans to contact her local Wildlife Trust. She says "It’s really helped me realise the possibilities that young people can get into if interested in the natural world. We did tracking skills, really cool! – after seeing a badger set I’d like to see if there are any near my home"
Jack, who is looking to create a career in nature broadcasting attended the course hoping to learn about new species, and learn from his peers. He says "All kids are born with that fascination of nature – but us here – we’ve all kept it! We’re teaching each other and learning from each other"
Helen is driven by improving opportunities for young people and is already working to develop a variety of projects including eco initiatives within primary schools. When asked what she was hoping to achieve from the YDS, Helen replied "To re-establish a connection with nature, and connect with like-minded people, we can inspire each other with our actions, the more knowledge you have, the better you know what to do to protect it (nature)."
Another Young Darwin was looking for advice on jobs and careers, but found she was learning and appreciating a lot more than expected. "I just love nature, spending time in nature, having some quiet time, it relieves the stress. When I haven’t been out in nature, things just build up."
Lucy, who wants to be a conservationist, was hoping to meet like-minded people whilst spending time as a YD. She says "Loving nature is seen as geeky in London where I live. I want to change people’s perception. Nature is dying due to people’s laziness, not enough is being done, greed is taking over the world, I want to help educate my friends." Lucy is already part of the Ecological Council at her school, which has achieved in getting rid of plastic in the canteen, and now use bamboo cutlery in place of plastic.
A previous Young Darwin Scholar recently wrote about how beneficial her time as a Young Darwin Scholar was for her. Read it here.
Find out more about the Young Darwin Scholarship
Wednesday, August 28, 2019