In spite of all the good work of conservation organisations and thousands of individuals around the world we are still losing species. What seems to be missing is that there is a lack of a broad consent across the world that this draining away of species to extinction should stop. At this stage we need a world event for nature to galvanize people into truly becoming concerned for the continuation of species.
What is suggested here, and this is elaborated upon in greater detail in the book Planet Dancing, is that we come together to organize such an event. What I have in mind is that we put in place a structure to collect coinage from children from around the world to create the first Children of the World Nature Reserve. We would establish such a reserve in a part of the world particularly rich in wildlife: probably in the tropics or in the semi-tropics.
Children from many countries who contributed a little of their savings to the project would know, when they go to bed at night, that they had helped to establish a safe place for animals and birds and insects.
But the establishment of one more nature reserve is not the point at all.
The nourishing of awareness of nature in millions of children should be the goal. Through web-sites and newsletters the children would be kept up to date of things happening in their reserve. It could be the discovery of a new species of butterfly or news of the first recorded nesting of spoonbills in the reserve: that sort of thing. Of equal importance they would be given some understanding of what is required in the management of such areas. In time these children, on growing to adults, would carry with them this informed appreciation of nature and an understanding of what is needed if species are to survive. Such heightened awareness would feed into their business and political judgments where there is an issue of conservation on the line. By such a process millions of children around the world would gain a conservation ethic that can only be to the benefit of wildlife.
Clearly the organizing of such a world event would be considerable. But that is not a reason to brush such an idea aside. Across the world we have thousands of conservation organisations and thousands of conservation-minded citizens who are concerned that something needs to be done if we are not to continue to lose species. Children are the key: they are much more given to change than adults. We no longer have the luxury of sleep-walking past the problem.
At this stage we need nothing less than a major event to draw world attention to this continuing problem of extinctions. I encourage conservation organisations and conservation-minded people to join with me on this blog in debate on how we might best organize for the creation of the first Children of the World Nature Reserve.