The Challenges and Obstacles Youth Face in Wildlife Conservation
Whether they’re raising awareness or advocating for policy changes, youth have the ability to make significant contributions to wildlife conservation efforts. However, they must understand the challenges and obstacles that face them.
A great way to start is by volunteering with a local conservation organization or zoo. Volunteering can help youth learn about the issues they’re facing and inspire them to take action.
Whether it is through wildlife-based tourism or education, youth-led initiatives are a key part of conservation efforts. They can help protect and restore habitats, fight climate change, or advocate for policies that improve the conservation of wildlife. These initiatives can also inspire other youth to become more involved in wildlife conservation.
For example, the Youth Conservation Corps (YCC) is an opportunity for youth to live, learn and work on national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, and fish hatcheries while developing an ethic of environmental stewardship. YCC members participate in projects like nature beautification, invasive species removal and trail building.
The Youth for Wildlife Conservation Forum (Y4WC) is a global network that unites youth worldwide passionate about wildlife conservation and empowers them to be the future leaders our planet needs. The organization facilitates a community of young conservationists, provides them with capacity-building resources, and showcases their work for the world to see. Y4WC is one of many youth-led initiatives that are making an impact on wildlife conservation around the globe.
Habitat destruction is one of the biggest challenges in wildlife conservation. The habitats of many species are being lost due to land conversion for agriculture, road building and other uses. Habitats are also being destroyed by pollution, such as untreated sewage, mining waste and acid rain that affects freshwater species. Climate change is another threat to habitats, with higher temperatures reducing the ability of plants and animals to survive.
In response to these threats, youth can work to raise awareness about the importance of conserving wildlife and their habitats. They can also lobby to ensure that habitats are protected from degradation. Youth advocates can make a difference by working together, raising awareness, and building strong partnerships with like-minded people and organizations. They can also create and implement programs that support wildlife conservation. For example, the Youth Wildlife Conservation Experience at the Sheep Show convention and sporting expo is free for high school students. It includes sheep conservation presentations, outdoor career seminars and hands-on educational inspiration to encourage young people to get outdoors.
In the wake of the largest climate change protest in history, youth have a vested interest in protecting wildlife and our planet. They have unique perspectives, energy, and creativity that can help address some of the most significant environmental challenges.
They can do this by raising awareness and participating in conservation action, or by influencing policy decisions. To do so, they need to be well-informed and strategic in their approach.
In addition, young people are tackling the challenge of climate change in their communities. They can do this by collaborating with community partners to create their own climate change projects. They also need to understand the local context and cultural issues that impact their community.
The CALL Program helps youth from marginalized communities (low-income neighborhoods, black/indigenous/people of color, new Canadians) explore their role in combatting climate change and exploring careers in conservation science. These unique experiences empower youth to become leaders in their own communities and ignite a ripple effect of transformative action.
Advocacy and lobbying
Youth advocates can play a vital role in wildlife conservation efforts. By raising awareness, encouraging others to get involved, and influencing policy decisions, they can help protect wildlife and their habitats. In addition, they can participate in youth-led initiatives such as the Jane Goodall Institute’s Roots and Shoots program, which operates in over 100 countries worldwide.
Whether they are exploring the wild in the backcountry of California or building trails on a national park, participants in SCA’s National Crew programs have one of the best summers of their lives. During these paid summer employment and outdoor education programs, youth build lifelong skills while helping their community.
During the Sheep Show Convention and Sporting Expo, MidwayUSA hosts the Youth Wildlife Conservation Experience. Schools attend a private experience on the 13th and 14th, then the event is open to the public for free on January 15. The YWCE features sheep conservation presentations, outdoor career seminars, and hands-on educational inspiration for inspiring youth to explore and enjoy the outdoors.