September Newsletter 2015

01 September 2015

 1. International Day of Peace

September 21st was  the United Nations International Day of Peace. As a UN Ambassador of Peace, Dr. Jane Goodall celebrated the theme of “Partnerships for Peace – Dignity for All” by speaking at the UN Headquarters. She spoke about the hope spread though Roots & Shoots children around the world and about how individuals can make a difference. She even started her address with a chimpanzee call and flew a Peace Dove in the UN Headquarters! S

he also introduced her new book, Prayer for World Peace. Click here to hear Dr. Jane Goodall’s Peace Day message.
2. Roots & Shoots Peace Day Events in Australia

In the spirit of working together, Roots & Shoots groups all over Australia celebrated Peace Day this year with many of our wonderful partners!

South Australia: We celebrated in SA with a field trip to ZoosSA’s Monarto Zoo. We visited the tree that Dr. Jane planted on a previous visit and heard a special chimp keeper talk at Jane Goodall’s Chimpanzee Conservation Centre. Students went for a bush walk, mapped giraffes in their habitat and made their own individual origami peace dove. To conclude the day, students constructed and flew a giant peace dove back at Bush Camp. Thanks to Zoos SA!

Western Australia: A Tranby college Roots & Shoots group are currently in Bali. For Peace Day they visited an orphanage to present them with gifts and spread Dr. Jane’s message of Peace animals, people and our environment.

New South Wales: Keeping Randwick’s Trees Roots & Shoots group in Sydney built and hung talismans for peace on some of our threatened urban trees.

Sydney Roots & Shoots youth celebrated with Taronga Zoo’s YATZ at a unique Peace Day event at the zoo. We participated in educational and wildlife workshops, heard a special Peace Day keeper talk at the chimpanzee exhibit and made and decorated our own personal peace pledges. Students made a human peace sign and then flew a giant peace dove through the entire zoo with music to spread the message of peace to Taronga Zoo visitors. Thanks to Taronga Zoo!

Victoria and WA: A number of Roots & Shoots schools around Australia participated in Peace Day including St Brigid’s College, Blue Gum Montessori, John Curtin School’s and Northern Bay College.

It was a fantastic Peace Day across Australia that allowed youth to share their passion for peace and inspired others to find peace with people, animals and the environment. See more stories and photos on our exclusive R&S Australia Facebook group and members page If you are inspired to get involved in our next events, email us and sign up for Roots & Shoots!

3. National Threatened Species Day

September 7th was National Threated Species Day and we celebrated by joining in on the festivities of a wonderful book launch. The book Phasmid: Saving the Lord Howe Island Stick Insect, written by Invertebrate Keeper Rohan Cleave in collaboration with artist Coral Tulloch, was launched by Zoos Victoria CEO Jenny Gray in the magnificent butterfly room at the Melbourne Zoo. JGIA CEO Nancy Moloney was delighted to attend on behalf of Dr Goodall, who wrote the forward for this book, the first children’s book ever to be published by CSIRO. Pick up your copy of this remarkable story of a species rescued from extinction here.
4. Mental Illness in Animals

On September 10th, while Australia recognised R U OK Day, published a feature on the possibility that other species may also suffer from psychological disorders.

The introduction retold the sad story of Flo and Flint, Mother and son chimps from Gombe Stream Research Centre. When Flo passed away, Flint was unable to cope without her.  He showed signs of clinical depression, stopped eating and soon, his immune system became too weak to support him. Flint died just one month after losing his mother.

The article highlights that stress and depression can take on many forms in animals. From pulling out feathers and fur to constant licking and even self-harm, these are just some of the signs we need to look for.

So, maybe it’s not just our friends and family we need to keep an eye on and ask ‘are you Ok?’.  Like us, animals can experience, or may even be predisposed to mental illness, and we should be there to seek help for them.  To find out more about Flo and Flint visit

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