Getting Glamour-ous with Dr. Jane

Everyone was dressed up and excited. We huddled together on the curb waiting to cross the street and enter one of the most famous performance spaces in the United States: Carnegie Hall.

Shanay Healy Katia Rossi Glamour Awards NYC

Shanay Healy Katia Rossi Glamour Awards NYC

It was November 10, and I had traveled to New York City to support Dr. Jane at the Glamour 2008 Women of the Year Awards. With me were Roots & Shoots Graduate Fellow Katia Rossi, as well as Roots & Shoots members from Port Jefferson, New York; New York City Home Educators Alliance (NYCHEA); and Western Connecticut State University.

Our calves burned as we were led, in heels, up several flights of stairs to the highest balcony. The view from our seats was outstanding. I tried to think of all the people who had sat in my seat before me. What did they wear? What performance did they see? I felt so lucky and overwhelmed with the history of the place.

We spotted Dr. Jane right away and then peered down to try and see the other award winners. We watched the stars’ entrances and introductions. Some of the celebrities—including Natalie Portman—were waiting in line to meet Dr. Jane. You could see the excitement and admiration they felt when they were meeting Dr. Jane. I remember those same feelings when I first met her too.

We were seated with a few groups of young women supporting other organizations and award winners. Even though we were far from the stage, the award winners knew that a whole bunch of young people were up there watching.

They would call up to us and say things like, “To all the young women in the balcony, this is what I wish someone would have told me when I was your age.” It made the whole experience so unique and especially uplifting. The editor of Glamour Magazine, Cynthia Leive, said, “I know you are in the nosebleeds today, but we hope that someday you’ll be up on this stage receiving your own award.”

Besides all the wonderful women we got to listen to and be inspired by, I think my favorite part was when Dr. Jane accepted her Lifetime Achievement Award. She pant-hooted at us from the stage, and we cheered in return. The Huffington Post wrote, “Jane did a special chimpanzee call to a group of girls from her not-for-profit Roots & Shoots, who were sitting in the upper balcony.” What they didn’t mention is how loud we cheered back!

Katia Rossi Shanay Healy Glamour Awards NYC

Katia Rossi Shanay Healy Glamour Awards NYC

It was a truly inspirational evening. The performances, speeches and heartfelt stories left me in a euphoric daze. Looking back on the event, it continues to fuel me to make a difference.

Want to get more of the Glamour awards happenings? Get the gossip.


Peace Day 2008!

Hey everyone, Roots & Shoots Day of Peace was a great success all around the world! Congratulations! Here are some highights from the weekend.

Katia and I at the United Nations in 15 naughts of wind!

Katia and I with the Peace Bell made out of old weapons, “May peace prevail on earth!”

The United Nations New York City

Myself with Peace Dove and Dr. Jane in the background at St. Catherine’s Park

National Office Ladies: Claire, Katherine and I

Mi amigo, Christian and I

Don’t forget to share your Roots & Shoots Day of Peace experience with us! Submit a Project Report and send your photos, with completed release forms, to!

Thank you for this amazing opportunity!

Hi my name is Katia Rossi and I am the new Roots & Shoots Graduate Fellow.

I have just moved to Connecticut from Pullman, Washington. I began my involvement in community service starting my junior year of high school. Four years later, during my sophomore year at WSU, I was finally able to establish a Roots & Shoots group. I enjoyed leading this group because I have a natural ability to recognize important issues and enjoy seeking out tangible solutions through service projects. I include everyone when organizing an activity and love developing partnerships in my community. Now that I have graduated I am really excited to move into a career that allows me to travel and network with other university groups and share my R&S experiences.

My values are strong in all three areas of concern. At WSU I organized film screenings of An Inconvenient Truth as part of the week long Campus Climate Challenge Campaign, which sparked a lot of discussion about global warming. Other projects included volunteering at our local senior center, walking dogs from the humane society, and partnering other organizations for stream cleanup events. The most inspiring experience came when we met the young members of the Lena Whitmore Elementary Roots & Shoots group for the first time. We took them out to learn about horses at a local sanctuary called Orphan Acres. They were full of energy and so amazing to work with. I was inspired by their enthusiasm to learn about the world around them and find ways to make a difference.

If you have any inspirational stories or need support for event ideas, please don’t hesitate to email me.


Roots & Shoot Day of Peace 2008

What are you doing for the United Nations International Day of Peace?

Don’t forget to celebrate this Sunday September 21st, 2008.

Each year in support of the United Nations International Day of Peace, Roots & Shoots members and friends come together to promote peace. All over the world young people craft Giant Peace Dove Puppets from reused materials and fly the Doves in their communities. From the high peaks of Mt Kilimanjaro to the low plains of Kansas, Peace Doves fly, held high by hopeful hands.

This year will be my second Peace Day experience, my first was in Los Angeles in Griffith Park in 2006. Peace Day was what inspired me to start a Roots & Shoots club at my high school. This year I will be joining up with Dr. Jane in New York City to attend the United Nations International Day of Peace Observance and Student Conference at the United Nations Headquarters and later the Roots & Shoots Day of Peace Giant Peace Dove Puppet Ceremony and Parade at St. Catherine’s Park. I look forward to meeting many of the New England Youth Leadership Council members and going to NYC for the first time ever!

Check out the website to find an event near you or to get information on how to create your own event!

After Peace Day don’t forget to tell us about your brilliant ideas by submitting a project report!

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 anytime.

Keep up the great work!

With hope for the future,

Shanay Healy

R&S Youth Leaders: No to Plastic Bags

Two Roots & Shoots Youth Leaders, Emily and Cassie, from the New England Youth Leadership Council (NEYLC) testified earlier this week at the Connecticut Capitol in support of a state wide ban on plastic bags.

As a former member of the NEYLC, I am so proud of these guys! This is a perfect example of youth really taking action to make a difference and not just in their local community but in their state!

Check out Emily’s interview on Channel 8!

Also, check out the accompanying story!

And of course, if you like it, be sure to Digg it!

Youth Leadership Retreat

Sorry for the lack of activity but Shawn and I spend all of last week working on the annual Youth Leadership Retreat, which started last Friday and ended yesterday.

I think it is safe to say, it was a great weekend!

We still need to go through the evaluations but everyone seemed happy and we got a lot accomplished.

Here is the summery of the weekend from my perspective

Funniest moment: The tennis ball game

Deepest moment: Why R&S is the best by Emily (I do not think there was a dry eye in the house)

Most Exciting Moment: Dance Dance Revolution (Ya’ll know Chelsea and I broke it down)

Saddest Moment: Saying good bye

Happiest Moment: For moi, the standing O everyone gave Shawn and I

Best expression: (I think she was trying to figure out what the other group was doing with the tennis ball, love ya Elan!)

Elans Expression

For more pictures from the weekend, visit and look under the Roots & Shoots collection and then look in the Youth Leadership Retreat album. For those who attended, look for an email about how we will be disbursing all of the pictures (I have to decide on the best method).

Also, check out the slideshow shown the last night on YouTube: