April Newsletter 2015

01 April 2015

1. Upcoming Global JGI Meeting

We are delighted to share that we will be having our inaugural global Jane Goodall Institute meetings in Barcelona in May! At the meetings we will be sharing ideas and collaborating with our colleagues from 35 JGI Chapters around the world.  It will be four days of exploring our international activities, structure and communications with the end goal of a renewed global JGI vision and action plan. We are very excited about being a part of what is sure to be an incredibly inspirational gathering! Of course hosted by none other than our very own beloved founder Dr Jane.

2. People Changes at JGIA

JGIA is happy to announce that we have a new team member! Nicky Kim-McCormack joins us as an Administrative Assistant with more than 15 years of project management experience. She has previously worked in office administration at the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW), has a Masters of Wildlife Management and is currently pursuing her Masters of Philosophy in Primatology.

In her spare time, Nicky helps rescue Australian wildlife with Sydney Wildlife & ORCCA and fosters rescue dogs. She has also helped develop the ‘Wildlife Rescue App’ to help the public know how to help injured wildlife. Being passionate about primates and their conservation, she is excited to be joining the JGIA team and contributing to the organisation’s mission. And we are thrilled to have her on board – welcome Nicky!

3. Spotlight on Roots & Shoots Beijing

Since starting our first school group in 1994 we have worked with over 1,000 schools and trained 10,000 teachers in China. Growth in the past year… Examples of some of our wonderful projects include:

  • Organic Grow Project – launched in March 2011 to engage students in learning about nature through planting school gardens. The project currently involves 24 schools across China and benefits more than 20,000 students.
  • Clear Water Environmental Education Project – educates students on the wetland ecosystem. Clear Water has expanded to 27 schools, 5 provinces, 1,858 students and 208 teachers across 73 student-led activities which have impacted more than 30,000 people in their communities.
  • No Shark Fin Project – launched in 2011 in partnership with the Humane Society International to raise awareness, change public opinion and reduce shark fin consumption. The project has spanned 89 Chinese college teams, 27 cities, 120,000 pledges to stop consuming shark fin and even changed government policy in China.
  • Guardians of the Elephants Project – educates university students about the truth behind the ivory trade and encourage them to take action and promote public awareness.

For more information on these or other R&S projects please contact rootsandshoots@janegoodall.org.au.

4. Great Apes in Advertising

Have you noticed the recent increase in the use of chimpanzees and other primates in entertainment in Australia?  We have, and the JGIA team is working to create more awareness around this issue, including connecting with the companies that allow the use of great apes on their networks or in advertising.

The use of great apes in entertainment and advertising is contrived and creates misleading and degrading perceptions of these magnificent animals.  Seriously endangered in the wild, performing primates are taken from their mothers at a very young age.  Audiences see cute and cuddly animals, which leads to the impression that they are easily handled.  Such images make young apes increasingly popular as pets in some countries.  And this is just the tip of the iceberg.

To help make a difference, we have three easy steps you can take:
– Do not buy cards, posters or ornaments that show great apes outside their natural habitat
– Notify JGIA (you can message us  on Facebook) of the use of primates in the media
– Write to the company responsible with the help of a letter from Dr Jane Goodall https://www.janegoodall.org.au/entertainment/

5. Our thoughts are with our friends in Nepal

Of course we have all heard the devastating news of the terrible earthquake in Nepal.  JGIA joins our JGI global family in sending our thoughts and hearts to all the pour souls affected by the disaster. We have received word from our JGI Nepal colleague, Manoj Gautam, to say that our JGI team is safe but struggling to cope with the new reality of needing to rebuild the nation. They report that it is a ‘wait and watch’ situation regarding the animals as they wait for specific information on crisis management and the required intervention.

The Jane Goodall Institute is working on ways that we can help in the difficult days ahead particularly with regards to our Roots & Shoots communities. In the meantime, we send the Nepalese people and animals strength, togetherness, endurance and positivity during this time of incredible hardship.

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