The aim of Story4Environment is to bring environmental education in the schools and homes through animal stories. The base for this is my book: Animals – Stories from Across the World.
The idea of this book came about in January 2010, when I questioned over and over again: how can we increase people’s awareness of what is happening to our environment? The excesses of consumption that I saw around me every day, the careless “throw away culture” and ignorance and lack of respect for wildlife, infuriated me (and still does). That same year, I decided to take a sabbatical and volunteered to work with a UK youth development charity in Borneo, where I worked on a construction project for the Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Center (BSBCC) in Sepilok, Malaysia. My time spent there together with other young people, living in a basic camp in the rainforest, taught me at least THREE things:
1. Environmental Education is essential
2. The key people to start educating are the young
3. The best medium to use is animals
Having learned these THREE important lessons in Borneo, the following question was: HOW can we raise environmental awareness among children by using animals as a medium? The answer was simple: STORYTELLING!
Stories are fun and gives room for creativity. And, furthermore, stories about animals can open up the door to environmental education for children. Learning about the threats that certain animals face today shines a spotlight on a variety of general environmental issues. For example, many animals today are threatened by the loss of their natural habitat due to aggressive deforestation by humans. Deforestation again, has an impact on our water resources.
If you decide to buy the book and support this mission, I would encourage teachers, parents, guardians and children to have some fun with the book and to learn about and explore the animal kingdom and the issues the book raises.
However, this is only a story book. Don’t forget to go outside, open up your senses and explore in nature. That is where the real appreciation and awareness of our natural environment truly begins.