Engagement with communities

My interest in volunteering and engagement began as an undergraduate student in Michigan, USA. I was actively involved in the Soil and Water Conservation Society; President of the Grand Valley State University Chapter during my final year. As a chapter we lead river restoration and invasive species removal projects in West Michigan. Along with these experiences, my childhood fascination with koalas and life-long interests in Australia, inspired me to travel there and participate in forest restoration projects; that further inspired my seven years as a student and resident in northern Australia. 

In 2014, I was an invited speaker at Erskine Stewart’s Melville School in Edinburgh. I spent a week engaging with students and staff about fishes, rivers and migration. I wrote a blog post about my experience. Again in 2016, I spoke with students at Erskine Stewart’s Melville School in Scotland, and Beaumont Middle School in Kentucky, about fishes, rivers, and human impacts on these environments and species. 

The FIRE Lab team at Swansea University are also actively engaged with communities in and around Swansea. You can follow along with FIRE Lab activities and stories both through our Blog and Twitter. For World Fish Migration Day 2020, we are working up several events that include an Underwater Haiku Experience as well as an interactive story-telling adventure for families. Our goal with these events is to have fun, and to engage with others about why we care about our freshwater ecosystems, how these ecosystems are changing locally and globally, and to better understand others’ knoweldge and stories about these ecosystems.

FIRE Lab team is also working on a short story about our local river, the Tawe. We are planning a book packed with adventure and activities for children (ages 7-11). Stay tuned for updates on this project throughout 2020.