It’s not news to us here at BCLT that connecting kids to nature leads to good things – for the kids and for our world. Recent studies and articles only confirm what we have watched for the last eleven years with our Jr. Stewards program that kids who connect with nature adopt good behaviors, become happier people, and are more likely to continue to work to solve our environmental challenges.
In 2009 the Jr. Stewards was founded by kids, for kids. Since then children who have come through the program have connected to nature by removing tons of invasive plants, planting thousands of native plants, encountering myriads of creatures from the lowly potato bugs to protected legless lizards to adorable rabbits, and learning to share their love and knowledge of nature with others. Some of the original Jr. Stewards have grown up and moved on to college, several pursuing degrees in environmental studies, but all of them taking lessons learned at Bolsa Chica with them.
What are those lessons? Like the studies suggest, that by being connected to nature they can have positive impacts on the world and the people around them, and by doing that they are happier people.
You can read it in their own words:
The Jr. Stewards program is free and open to all kids. They work the same schedule and do the same work as the older Stewards under the guidance of the Jr. Stewards Coordinator Danny. They also get opportunities for special activities such as hikes and camp-outs. Want to learn more? Go here.