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November 14, 2019
Wilderkids is back after a short break and what a cracking episode to kick off the new season of interviews.On this episode we have adventurer and conservationist, Holly Budge who tells us all about her visual campaign and charity - How Many Elephants.Anyone that is familiar with my art will know how much I love elephants so when a friend from home told me about Holly, who had visited her children’s school, inspiring them all with her passion for saving these wonderful creatures, I knew that I had to interview her.Holly is a passionate fun courageous woman and I think you’re all going to love hearing about her adventures as much as I did…We chat about . . . - Her hard hitting visual campaign and charity - How she went from being a skydiving camerawoman to being a conservationist - Her terrifying skydive over Everest!- How a teacher expanded her mind and helped put her on the path she’s on today- How passion and determination can help you achieve anything you set your mind to- How if you can hone something right down and do one thing really well you will have a bigger impact- The time she has spent in the African bush with the all female anti-poaching groups - The Black Mambas and the Akashinga- Her experiences with school children in Africa and the UK and how they compareTake a look at www.howmanyelephants.co to find out more about Holly and her campaign.
June 21, 2019
Today is World Giraffe Day and I couldn’t think of a better way to celebrate it than chatting to giraffe expert and children’s author Monica Bond. Monica is a wildlife biologist at the Wild Nature Institute, an NGO that creates environmental education tools for children and adults in Tanzania and the US, as well as other English speaking countries. Africa is a place that holds a real fascination for me so I absolutely loved chatting to Monica about her work out there and what she believes needs to be done to save Africa’s unique and amazing wildlife. If you fancy escaping to Africa, quite literally, for a little while, have a listen. We talk about . . . The important work that she is doing in Africa. The differences and similarities between children in Africa and the US in terms of their connection to nature.Monica’s beautiful children’s books and her self-publishing journey to get them out into the world.The effect that educating children about the issues facing our natural world is having at ground level. Monica’s experiences working with woman and girls in Tanzania and the role they play in preserving Africa’s wildlife.What it’s like working in Africa, particularly as a woman.The biggest problems we’re facing in conserving our natural worldAnd what gives her hope that we can save it.Take a look at the www.wildnatureinstitute.org to see the amazing and important work they are undertaking in Africa and in the US. For details on how to buy Monica's beautiful books please visit my website wilderkids.org
February 28, 2019
It's been a while since I’ve had my good friend and fellow podcaster Tash (from My Home Planet) on the show, so I thought I’d bring her on to discuss a very old book that is new to me and a film that I absolutely love, that is now 10 years old, which I can’t quite believe! Both are still completely relevant. We normally meet in person for these chats but this time we had to have a virtual cup of tea together instead.We end up chatting about Generation Z and their demands for businesses to be more transparent and sustainable and how ultimately that should give us all hope that we can halt this destructive path that we're on.
January 8, 2019
On today’s show I’m delighted to introduce you to wildlife photographer Suzi Eszterhas. I had such a blast talking to Suzi that I couldn’t even edit our conversation down, there are too many nuggets in there worth sharing.It was one of those chats where you wish you were sat down in person over a couple of beers.It’s a great interview but if you are a parent or caregiver of girls, this is definitely an interview you need to listen to!We talk about . . .How this sensitive tough girl who took on the bullies at school by learning to fight.How raising an orphan serval was one of the best experiences of her life and how being a photographer made her a better fur mum.How fostering empathy in young children might just be what we need to save our planet’s wildlife.The sexism she’s faced in a male dominated profession.Her experience of sexual harassment, her method for dealing with it and the anger she now feels about it happening to the young woman she mentors.How strong is the new pretty.The outrageous sexist comments that inspired her to create a not-for-profit, Girls Who Click, to mentor young women and the surprising effect being a mentor has had on her. How to deal with your own child wanting to go into an unreliable and tough industry. The importance of following your bliss. How hard it is to remain hopeful if you don’t have a strong spiritual framework within you. How we can cure so many of our mental problems with forest bathing. Her experience with poachers when out in the field and why she has sympathy for them. Why she supports small grass root organisations over larger ones and the suspicions she has about how much funding they actually put into conservation efforts. How the jungle is a bootcamp for the heart and soul. And of course her career as a wildlife photographer.
October 25, 2018
Since beginning this conservation journey the most amazing people keep entering my life. I am continually awed and inspired by their passion and dedication to shaping this world into a better place for all of us. I’m thankful to call them my friends.On today’s show I get to chat to one of those friends, Georgie Dolphin. We met over a shared loved of wildlife conservation and children’s books, so as you can imagine, the attraction was instant. Georgie’s a rare breed. A truly kind, generous and lovely soul.Georgie works for Humane Society International (HSI). An amazing organisation that work to create a humane and sustainable world for all animals, including people. Through education, advocacy and empowerment. We talk quite a bit about the important work that HSI undertake, particularly the role Georgie plays.Her children’s book, ‘Dolphin Freedom For Wally And Molly’, seeks to education children about where dolphins truly belong, in the wild. A sensitive and gentle story, that ends with fun dolphin facts and games.Also in our chat . . .What turned a 13 year old Georgie into an animal advocate. What came first the desire to save dolphins or to create children’s books.Georgie’s book making process using just her computer, how she printed it and what her goal is for publishing the book.The public response to her children’s book.Getting her children’s book into Japan and China. How she copes with copes what she’s exposed to on a daily basis through her job.How much trouble the world’s donkeys are in at the hands of Chinese medicine, something I never knew about it. About dolphin advocate Ric O’Barry and the film, The Cove, about the annual wild dolphin capture in Taiji Japan. Such an important film for dolphin conservation.The Montessori School child-centred educational approach.The importance of social media in spreading the conservation message, particularly in countries that have been traditionally hard to penetrate.I hope you enjoy this really educational episode of Wilderkids. If our eyes our opened we can action serious world change just by simply deciding where we put our money.
August 1, 2018
You may have noticed that there has been a quite a gap between the last episode of Wilderkids and this one. The art/book side of my life has taken over everything lately - in the final push to get my next children’s book finished and in preparing for a tiger fundraising art exhibition. However, everything is now back on track and I can once again give the podcast, both the interviewees and the listeners, the attention it deserves. Today’s guest is Ondine Sherman, co-founder of the not-for-profit Voiceless and author of the young adult fiction book Sky. We actually did this interview back in April and the lovely Ondine has been incredibly patient with me not having had a chance to edit (which always takes a surprisingly long time) and publish our chat until now, so thank you Ondine!!!Voiceless envisions a world in which animals are treated with respect and compassion and is doing amazing work in drawing attention to the plight facing animals in factory farming and in the protection of wild animals. They believe in the power of education to ensure a better future for animals. Something I also believe in strongly.We chat about.....Her reasons behind creating Voiceless and the work the charity undertakes. How she managed to get the support of celebrities to boost the profile of Voiceless.Why they are now focusing their attention on youth empowerment.The shocking truth behind the kangaroo meat industry. How they tackle teaching animal cruelty to teenagers without giving them graphic details.The young adult fiction book, the first in a series, that Ondine has written. The book, Sky, is about a young vegan Australian that engages youth in animal protection issues. How Australia and Israel compare in their conservation issues and their approaches to these issues.And the surprisingly collaborative and peaceful relationship between Israel and it’s neighbours that you never hear about in the news.For the show notes please visit www.wilderkids.org
June 1, 2018
On this week’s show we're joined by Roberto D’Andrea, part of a touring performance troupe called the Connies, born of the rich 112 year Melbourne Tram Conducting tradition, that bring environmental education to children at festivals and schools in Australia and in India.With India having such a special place in my heart after spending so long travelling there, I particularly loved hearing about Roberto’s adventures in Kolkata.During our conversation we talk about.......The loss of a beautiful tradition and with it the loss of a bit of soul.The importance of taking children on the journey that a piece of rubbish will make from when it’s dropped on their street until it reaches the sea.Working with environmental NGO’s to get their messages out there.What Melbourne and Kolkata have in common.The environmental problems facing India and what the Connies are doing to help.And the importance of free range childhood.Roberto knows so much about wildlife and is just the loveliest guy. I really enjoyed talking to him.With ever increasing human populations throughout the world, we need to have environmentally sustainable modes of transport and if they are manned by conductors that give environmental education at the same time it would just be brilliant.For the show notes please visit www.wilderkids.org
May 2, 2018
5 years ago the first all female anti-poaching unit was created to combat wildlife crime, particularly rhino poaching, in the greater Kruger National Park in north eastern South Africa. They go by the name of the Black Mambas.The idea behind the Black Mambas is inspirational but the women themselves - from local communities, which are frequently poor and disadvantaged - are my absolute heroines. These women through peaceful means, have caused poaching rates to fall to by 76% and bushmeat by 78%.As many of you will know, poaching of African wildlife particularly elephants and rhinos was the motivation behind my first children’s book and so these ladies have a special place in my heart!SO I’m delighted that today we’re joined by one of these amazing women - Lewyn Maefala - who heads up their community environmental education programme ‘Bush Babies’. Her enthusiasm is infectious and we had such a laugh over some of the stories of life as a Black Mamba but there are some harrowing stories too.We talk about.........How the Black Mambas are effective in the war against poaching even though they are unarmed.Being chased by lions. How you stop the children of poachers from growing up to become poachers themselves.Changing the traditional African attitudes about women.Sexual assault.And wildlife heroes.The publishing of this podcast episode ties in with the New York WILD Film Festival (media partners of Twig.fm) which begins today and runs till the 25 February. A documentary about the Black Mambas is one of the finalists! This is fantastic film festival so please check it out.I’m now busy packing up a box of my children's books (“The Disappearing Tusks”) for Lewyn to use in her classrooms :)For the show notes please visit www.wilderkids.org
March 1, 2018
Welcome to the first Wildkerkids podcast episode of 2018!On this week’s show I have Sarah Pilkington, a school teacher from rural (& I mean rural) Australia. In our conversation, amongst other things, you’ll hear about....... What life is like in a rural school that serves a farming community. What environmental programmes are part of the curriculum in Australian schools. How in an area where water scarcity is a huge problem, school children are playing a vital research role for the government. How getting children practically involved in environmental sustainability is far more successful than just teaching them the topic. How important it is to introduce sustainability through a lens that children can understand and relate to.I hope you enjoy today’s chat. For me it was great to hear about life in an Australian rural school as compared to life in city schools in Australia which is what I’m familiar with. It left me feeling the need to do a road trip to undertake some school visits in some of these remote communities. I reckon that would be pretty fun!To learn more about the Kids Teaching Kids Programme that Sarah talks about and how your kids or your school can get involved please visit www.kidsteachingkids.com.au. Please also check out the interview I did with the co-founder Arron Wood.For the show notes please visit www.wilderkids.org
January 5, 2018
Today I’m joined by one the nicest guys you could hope to meet, Marc Bekoff.Marc is Professor Emeritus of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the Colorado University, a Fellow of the Animal Behavior Society, a member of the Ethics Committee of the Jane Goodall Institute and an ambassador for Jane Goodall’s Roots & Shoots programme.He has published numerous essays and books for adults and 3 books for children.In 2005 he was presented with The Bank One Faculty Community Service Award for the work he has done with children, senior-citizens, and prisoners, and in 2009 he was presented with the St. Francis of Assisi Award by the New Zealand SPCA.Marc has also won several awards for the work he has done with children, senior-citizens, and prisoners.We talk about...... How he tackles potentially controversial subjects, like trophy hunting with kids. What school visits and prison visits have in common. Tackling the issue of war with children. His work with Jane Goodall and the Roots and Shoots programme. And why we all need to be more empathetic.I thoroughly enjoyed my chat Marc, a wonderful, kind and interesting man. I hope you enjoy it too.For the show notes please visit www.wilderkids.org
December 1, 2017
In this week's podcast episode of Wilderkids, I sit down with my good friend Tash over a cup of tea, to discuss a film, that despite its age, I only watched recently. It's a stunning looking film that had a real effect on me. We also chat about a book that makes a sneaky appearance in the film.I guess you could say it's a discussion about the dangers of corporate greed and a lack of respect for the Earth and its other inhabitants. But as always our chat ends in hope because we have to have hope right?...For the show notes please visit www.wilderkids.org
November 20, 2017
On today’s show you’ll meet the CEO of a fantastic initiative whose vision is to make outdoor play in nature an everyday part of childhood.Sarah Sutter heads up the not-for-profit organisation, Nature Play SA.In a short period of time, childhood has evolved into something most of us wouldn’t recognise. If we pause, our own experience of childhood is likely to look very different to that of our children. A number of societal changes have combined to brew the perfect storm. We lead busy lives. As working parents, we look to structured activities and new technologies to help us manage our time. Backyards have been reduced to courtyards and there’s a growing fear for our children’s safety.While it may feel like we’re making gains, what we’ve lost is the space to play. To create, imagine and be bored. To spend time in nature, engaging all of our senses, socialise and, most importantly, learn.Current research is telling us that our children are not as happy, healthy or emotionally resilient as they once were. Join me as I chat to Sarah about how Nature Play SA are working to empower parents, educators and the broader community to bring the essential elements of childhood back into our lives.For the show notes please visit www.wilderkids.org
October 18, 2017
Last week I spoke to the co-creator of an inspirational environmental education programme. It left me wondering what effect this programme has on the kids that take part in it, from their point of view. So on today’s show I chat to one of the previous attendees, a passionate young woman called Amy Park.Amy attended Kids Teaching Kids back in 2010, when she in year 9, and it had a lasting effect.........she became aware of the bigger picture and became determined to spread the message of saving the environment.For the show notes please visit www.wilderkids.org
October 9, 2017
Arron Wood has been a champion of the environment for most of his life. In this episode of Wilderkids, Arron shares the key turning point in his life, when, at 8 years old, the environmental warrior was born.Arron Wood is an Australian sustainable business and education leader. He is also the Deputy Lord Mayor of the City of Melbourne and the chairman of the 2017 World Ecocity Summit Advisory Board.At age 21, Arron co-created the amazing environmental education programme, Kids Teaching Kids, that has inspired over 125,000 future environmental leaders!For the show notes please visit www.wilderkids.org
October 9, 2017
What books affected you as a child? In the first episode of Wilderkids I chat with my good friend Tash, from My Home Planet, about the books that impacted our childhood.We talk about what's changed since then.......Is the world in a worse state?........Are we still telling the same stories to our children today?Learn about the inspiration behind the creation of the Wilderkids podcast and my series of children's books.Find out about what things are coming up on Wilderkids.Over the course of this adventure, wherever it takes us, I'll be introducing you to some fantastic people doing great things to connect kids to nature. I'll also be searching the planet high and low to bring you inspirational children's books about the natural world. If you would like to share any environmental children's books you love, please leave a comment below and I'll be sure to chat about them in future podcasts and will hopefully interview some of the creators behind the books.Find out more at www.wilderkids.org
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