Youth & Young Leader Digest
connecting emerging leaders in conservation
march 2011

in this issue ::
:: Collaboration & Ideas
:: Update from the Silk Road
:: Casting call for the ECO Chic
:: Youth Global SpeakOut!
:: News from Kamchatka
:: Cat in Water
:: Youth Global Leadership Update
:: Opportunities & Grants
Collaboration & Ideass  Myfanwy Rowlands

I am looking for a good source or sources of historical data on the fur trade, especially in California.  If anyone has done historical ecological studies before, I would love to communicate with you! 

Myfawny YP

Specifically, I'm looking for information and historical photographs from 1741 - 1911, but I am also interested in standard procedures for conducting these types of investigations.  Feel free to call or email me: / 530.205.5243.

Photo Caption/credit: "Northern River Otter". [Online]. Natural History Notebooks. Canadian Museum of Nature. Last updated 2010-12-02. (Web site consulted 2011-02-19).

Update from the Silk Road

Feb 5, Cycling Silk 


Kate Harris and Melissa Yule

set out in mid January on a year-long field research expedition exploring transboundary conservation in the mountains along the Silk Road.  Traveling by bike, they will get an up-close and personal view of the conservation efforts, challenges and successes of the region.


In mid-February, Mel and Kate posted their first blog from the road in Turkey.  Check out their adventures so far....

Casting call for the ECO Chic
Contributed by Kat Haber

Celebrities attract resources and attention like bees to an un-pollinated blossom.

From driving green to raising awareness for charismatic species to water conservation to producing eco shows, these celebs are conserving and communicating calls to action.

If driving Priuses is any sign of wilderness conservationists waiting to be invited to Nature Needs Half, then consider Ryan Gosling (28) who drives a black one. America Ferrera,24, drives a 2007 Toyota Prius, which she won in an auction, buying it for $35,000 -$10,000 over its market value. Paris Hilton, (28) drives a 2008 GMC Yukon Hybrid.

"The little things that people can do everyday to make a huge difference," Hilton explained to Newsday on how she changed all the light bulbs of her vehicle over to energy efficient light bulbs instead.

High School Musical and Hairspray star Zac Efron arrived at the Teen Choice Awards in an eco-limo. Mary-Kate is part of the Environmental Media Association, which invented the "green carpet, "celebs taking hybrid and electric cars to award shows and parties! None of these has been reported to have torched their hummers.

Continue reading >

Youth Global Speak Out
Call for input from Gayle Kimball

Greetings from California! I'm writing a book that gives you and other young people around the world an opportunity to say what's on your mind. This is your chance to be heard. Many of you have wonderful suggestions for how to make our world a better to live in, so I'm asking people age 19 and under to respond to 11 questions.  Here is a preview of responses so far:

What question would you ask of a wise person?
  1. What's the meaning of life
  2. How to have success in my life and happiness
  3. About the wise person's background and attitudes
  4. What happens after death

My life purpose
  1. Do good works, make the world better  
  2. Personal: Be successful in my goals, be happy, have business success, learn
  3. Worship God and fulfill my destiny
  4. Help parents
  5. Help country and the environment
Be part of Gayle's SpeakOut! by answering 11 question >

News from Kamchatka

Earlier this month, I got an email from Alexandra Filatkina with an update on her work at the Communications Officer with the World Wildlife Fund's Kamchatka office. 

Several of Alexandra's photographs were featured in the four-page PDF news update, including a stunning image of the Kizimen volcano, which has been active since November 2010.

"Kizimen volcano is located at the border of Kronotsky Nature Reserve and ash trail is ordinary directed towards the protected area. There is a probability some animals' groups which have to reside in unfavorable for them condition may abandon the reserve and lose the protection provided by nature reserve security" - Sergey Rafanov, the Head of Kamchatka Bering Sea ecoregional WWF department, said.

Read the full news update and see Alexandra's photographs >

Cat in Water

Cat in Water 

Along the coasts of Southeast Asia exists a cat that specializes in swimming for its meal. Its skin never gets wet, and to look at it brings to mind a leopard that shrunk in the wash.

The fishing cat is a species that has been little documented in the wild, despite the fact that it lives near villages. We are looking at a newly discovered population in Thailand's Khao Sam Roi Yot National Park.

Using the very tech-savvy Kickstarter platform, Morgan Heim and Joanna Nasar just launched "Cat in Water." Their project will explore the fascinating Southeast Asian fishing cats.  Read more about this dynamic duo and the unique fishing cats and watch the video to see what Morgan and Joanna are up to >

Youth Global Leadership Update

Boulder, CO USA

Submitted by Aleiya Evison

YGL has been very busy in the past few months! For starters, some of the YGLers volunteered at Alsup elementary in January. They taught some very cool fourth graders about leadership, read to the younger grades, and built a compost on the school's courtyard for the warmer months, supporting a greener school and helping to teach the kids about the environment.

Over the weekend of February 18-20 the YGLers also took part in the 2011 Boulder International Film Festival where they were a part of the Call2Action tent. This film series included movies that call upon the
audience to take action after watching the films. Some of the films were based
on environmental issues; Wasteland and Bag It, along with the moving documentaries the Last Lions and Mother. Check them out!

YGL is currently preparing to welcome their new members next weekend  and planning future service opportunties for this Spring and Summer.

Stay tuned at and look for the YGL page.

Happy almost-Spring!
YGLer, Aleiya Evison

Opportunities & Grants

Do Something Awards
Since 1996, has honored the nation's best young world-changers, 25 and under. Do Something Award nominees and winners represent the pivotal "do-ers" in their field, cause, or issue. In 2011 the five nominees will be rewarded with a community grant of $10,000, media coverage and continued support from 15 March Deadline!! Read more and apply!

Conservation Leadership Programme
The Conservation Leadership Programme  offers a range of different opportunities for emerging leaders to promote the development of future conservation leaders and provide them with the capacity to address the most significant conservation issues of our time.  Learn more about these opportunities >

The Institute for Interactive Journalism (J-Lab) and McCormick Foundation
New Media Women Entrepreneurs Program  
This funding opportunity is for women who have the vision, skills, and experience to launch a new venture. These can be solo ideas or team projects spearheaded by women. Grants up to $12,000 will be made to support individuals interested in creating new web sites, mobile news services, and other entrepreneurial initiatives that offer interactive opportunities to engage, inspire, and improve news and information in a geographic community or a community of interest. More information >

IDEA WILD provides biologists and educators working in developing countries with equipment and supplies to aid in their conservation efforts. Since IDEA WILD"s beginning fourteen years ago, they have aided over 2500 projects in 82 developing countries.  Learn more and apply >

Indonesian-US Youth Leadership Exchange - 10 March Deadline!
Legacy International, in partnership with the U.S. State Department, is sponsoring the Indonesian-U.S. Leadership Exchange program to promote environmental action. Six American youth will be selected to travel to Indonesia for three weeks, to gain more knowledge and skills in the fields of environmental conservation, leadership, and cross-cultural education.  More information >

Defenders of Wildlife Photo Contest
Submit up to 6 wildlife or wild-lands photographs.  Select photos will be featured on the Defenders of Wildlife website, quarterly newsletter, annual calendar and other publications.  Winners will be eligible for prizes including a week-long guided nature photography trip to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Park!  Learn more >


Reminder for contributions.  Please send contributions to me (send to by the first of each month.  Contributions can include:

  • Update on a project you are working on,
  • Call for collaboration or assistance,
  • Job/grant/scholarship opportunity that you have seen posted or have been awarded,
  • News on intergenerational collaboration or discussion on this important topic,
  • Announcements of conferences or other events.

I am open to other ideas for the digest as well!  Each submission should include your contact information and/or information where readers can find out more.  It can also include a photo (encouraged).

You can download the form for submitting a contribution here >

Join Our Mailing List!

Follow us on Twitter    Find us on Facebook
Nature Needs Half for web
WILD Logo - web