World Parks Congress Inspires a New Generation
Dec 01, 2014
17 November 2014: Among its many themes, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Parks Congress (WPC) has hosted discussions and events on the theme, ‘Inspiring a New Generation.’ This theme aims to empower youth to experience, be inspired by and value nature, and promotes a shared vision of inter-generational partnerships for parks, people and the planet.
Participants in this stream discussed, inter alia: connecting young people to nature to engender a love of and respect for nature, particularly through protected areas (PAs); empowering young people to have an active, integrated voice on conservation and the role of PAs; and investing in PAs to ensure their continuing role in inspiring a new generation to connect with nature.
Among the initiatives showcased in this stream, Parks Canada presented a technology programme that aims to encourage youth to experience, value and conserve nature and to remind Canadians and visitors of nearby opportunities for exploring nature. Parks Canada has also promoted the use of technology ranging from Google Street View and YouTube to Canada’s Coolest School Trip Contest to engage youth and other citizens in visiting nature.
Also at the Congress, Parks Canada announced the creation of its first urban national park, ‘Rouge National Urban Park.’ The park, which will be 16 times larger than Central Park in New York, US, will protect lands and waters in Toronto, Ontario and help connect urban citizens with nature.
The Inspiring a New Generation stream has also hosted sessions on, inter alia: an inter-generational dialogue; case studies on junior park rangers; and lessons learned from reaching out to reconnect. The stream is expected to result in a Young Peoples’ Media Coalition and a Young Peoples’ Pact for Parks, People and Planet.