With more kids than ever spending time behind computer screens and electronic devises, conservation faces an uphill battle. Research, like that from Cornell University, tells us that the majority of people who have a love for the out-of-doors, and a strong conservation ethic, developed it when they were young.
For many, it involved regular, fun, experiences on a farm, or in nature. Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods, documented that for others it was under the guidance of a mentoring adult, often not a parent, who opened up a child’s imagination and built fond and cherished memories of doing something outside.
Rural kids. Suburban kids. Urban kids.
Perhaps somewhat counter intuitive, kids from all walks of life are frequently less tuned-in, and less-comfortable with, hanging out in the woods or helping to feed a calf.
Your support, however, is working to change that. As a land trust that pledges to honor the protection of conservation into the future, in perpetuity, we realize that the future of conservation rests on future generations. The children of today become the leaders and voters of tomorrow and it is they who will determine how important conservation is in their future community’s lives.
The free programs range from stories and crafts at the Flower Memorial Library in Watertown, the Carthage Free Library and the Lowville Free Library, programs with homeschoolers to explore the woods, and our partnership with the New York State Zoo in Watertown which features animals that are native to New York State. These experiences are working to bring the joy and wonder of the out-of-doors to families and friends, all year round.
Spending time in nature is known to improve people’s health. It’s also just what the doctor ordered when it comes to ensuring a lasting conservation ethic and our pledge of conserving land forever.