Katie Spurgeon: “Being Invited to the Jane Goodall Roots & Shoot Awards ceremony was a great experience and a fantastic opportunity to meet and talk with others with an interest in conservation. It was amazing to see all of the projects that other schools were involved with, and I’m thankful that Bournemouth University and St Luke’s Primary School were a part of it.”
Daisy Mills: “Two years ago, when I was in Year 5 at St Luke’s primary school in Winton, I was one of three competition winners to design a pond for our school field. Little did I know that, a few years later, I would be presenting my design to Dr Jane. In 2021/22, students from Bournemouth University and St Luke’s were joined by local community volunteers to make our designs a reality. This included the local fire station, which provided water for the pond from their hoses.
The pond project was part of the Dr Jane Goodall Institute programme ‘Roots & Shoots’, aimed at encouraging school children around the UK to make a positive impact on the environment. Over 1,500 schools took part, with only 10 invited to the first Roots & Shoots Awards held in four years due to the pandemic.
I wasn’t expecting to have the opportunity to meet Dr Jane and tell her about the project, but she spent time talking to every school about their ideas. It was amazing to speak to someone who has had such a positive impact on environmentalism around the world. Later, Dr Jane gave a rousing speech about the global importance of conservation – she’s a truly inspiring lady and it was a real treat to spend time with her, learning more about how we can all make a difference.”
One thing I can remember from the speech is her saying that ‘Life is a dark tunnel, and at the end of the tunnel there is a star. That star is hope. But we are not going to stand at the mouth of the tunnel, cross our arms and say ‘That star had better come soon.’ We have got to roll up our sleeves and climb over, under and side to side of these obstacles that we face. We have got to earn that hope.”