Taking action in May

http://www.childrenandnature.org/news/detail/us_environmental_protection_agency_video_explores_the_value_of_urban_wetlan/

May is American Wetlands month. Learn about wetlands by watching the video in the link above.
Then visit: http://www.epa.gov/owow/wetlands/awm/ and then take action to protect and restore wetlands near you.

Also in May and happening this week from the 3rd-9th: Be Kind to Animals Week!

http://www.americanhumane.org/protecting-animals/special-events/be-kind-to-animals-week/

American Humane is a wonderful website.

If any Roots & Shoots groups take part, please don’t forget to submit project reports online.

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Happy Earth Day!

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http://action.farmsanctuary.org/site/PageServer?pagename=VirtualExperience

I received an email from one of our readers who shared this link with me after noticing the Farm Sanctuary handouts offered at my display table. Very neat. Thanks for sharing Angela!

Spring Garden Tips and Tricks

The days are longer and our plants are loving that warm sun photosynthesizing time. However much the plants enjoy this growing spree, our jungle of a front yard can only last so long. This Spring, green your landscaping routine by using less water, energy, chemicals, and best of all, our favorite type of green, money!

Be wise about watering: 50%-70% of a typical American family’s water usage per year goes to the lawn and garden. To save, make sure your sprinklers are set to water your garden, not the cement around it. You can keep your grass lush by not cutting it so short. Longer grass keeps the moisture in because of the shade that is crated by the long blades. Also, make sure that the ground is dry before you water it, more plants die of over-watering, rather than under-watering! Watering your plants midday, when the sun is at its hottest, evaporated up to 30% of what you sprinkled on it. Set your sprinkler for early in the morning, and watch your garden thrive!

Be energy efficient: In just one year Americans will use 800 million gallons of gas to mow their lawns. Even worse, we spill more gas trying to fill up our lawn equipment each year than the Exxon Valdez spilled in 1989! You have three options to mow your lawn; the most common gas-powered mower, electric mowers, or reel mowers – these are the ones you push by hand. Electric mowers cost about $5.00 USD to run all year, where as $5.00 USD will only get you two mows with a gas-powered mower. Reel mowers are practically silent, yet electric mowers make only one tenth of the noise that gas-powered mowers do. Push mowers also help you burn calories, up to 400 an hour! Also the grass clippings left over from a reel mower help fertilize the soil naturally, no Miracle Grow required!

Help the soil: To get rid of small weeds, like in your walkway cracks, you can simply pour boiling water or white vinegar on them. For peskier weeds there are many eco-friendly weed-killing options that won’t poison surrounding plants and the ground water. For larger areas, you can lay down old fabric or recycled newspaper to block the weeds from ever sprouting!

How far will you go for peace?

How far will you go for peace? It is a question that many Roots & Shoots youth have to ask themselves. I think I would go pretty far. Forget embarrassment, forget what’s “normal” and just go for it!

There are so many groups to support being peaceful. Grandmothers for Peace, Pennies for Peace, Pinwheels for Peace, Cranes for Peace, Soccer for Peace, and Texans for Peace. One of my favorites is Bark for Peace “Organic vegan dog treats you can eat with your dog!” (That one is for you Shawn!)

My latest action for peace was a bit unexpected. As we were leaving the Glamour Women of the Year Awards at Carnegie Hall, we happened to pass a man with a large multi-colored hula hoop. My collegue, JGI Communications Specialist/Press Officer, Claire Jones said, “Nice hula hoop!” as we passed. The man said, “It’s a hula hoop for peace. Do you want to try?” Upon hearing this I had to stop. I dropped my Glamour goody bag and slung the hoop over my head. After doing my best to consistently hula hoop for a good 20 seconds, I had to give up due to laughing so hard.

Here are some photos!

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There are so many funny things about these photos! Check out the looks that people are giving me, the juxtaposition of my silky dress and my bulky khaki coat (it’s the warmest one I had!), and the height of the heels I am wearing!

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Dr. Jane has done so much for peace, but one unique act for peace was snuggling up to a Peace Rat. Click here to read the article about these incredible bomb sniffing, people saving, hero rats!

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What crazy things have you done for peace lately?

Bird’s eye view

Flying above our country can give anyone a different perspective. It is eye opening how we change the environment to fit our needs, sometimes in a damaging way like in the aerial view of the clearcut forest patches. Here are a few pictures from my recent trip from N.Y.C. to the West coast. When you look at each one, think about how our actions affect land, water, and wildlife.

Click to enlarge so you can see the image better.

My happy furry family

Moving across the country and finding comfort in new surroundings  has been both challenging and rewarding….. through it all I have not been alone. Here are some pictures of my pets. I love them dearly. Enjoy!

New Youth Leadership Fellow: Shanay Healy

Hey everyone! My name is Shanay Healy and I will be the Roots & Shoots Youth Leadership Fellow for 2008-2009.

I’m from Ashland, Oregon which is in the Southern part of the state, just 14 miles from the California border. I got involved with Roots & Shoots when I went to the 2006 ChimpanZoo Conference in LA and later the Roots & Shoots Day of Peace celebration at Griffith Park. That was the first time I heard Dr. Jane speak and I knew then that I really wanted to get involved and take Roots & Shoots back to my community. I later did the ReBirth the Earth: Trees for Tomorrow Campaign as my Senior Project. Look for me and the rest of my story in the September e-newsletter.

After I graduated from Ashland High School in 2007 then I went to Denia, Spain as a Rotary Youth Exchange student. I lived there for 11 months with a host family and went to high school. I made incredible friends and wonderful memories and grew so much.

I spent my short summer in Oregon and then moved back East to Arlington, VA and started to work at the Jane Goodall Institute’s National Office as the Roots & Shoots Youth Leadership Fellow.

Now that I am settled in I want to let you all that I am here for any questions or any ideas you may have. You can email me at shealy@janegoodall.org anytime.

Keep up the great work!

With hope for the future,

Shanay Healy