Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Interview in BBC Wildlife Magazine

The BBC Wildlife Magazine October 2016 Edition had an article about Minority Ethnic people and about the fact that they were not going out into nature. Parts of an interview by me were included on page 32, "Diverse Nature" with a photo. The article is an interesting one and raises awareness of this topic to a wider audience who will know nothing about it. Well done to Ben Hoare and BBC Wildlife Magazine for highlighting the issue and getting the debate started.

In March, following me announcing my Race Equality in Nature Conference to take place in June (aiming to overcome the barriers to ethnic minority [non white] people getting out into nature in the UK) I was approached by Ben Hoare, Features Editor at BBC Wildlife Magazine, as he wanted to highlight the issue and write an article on the subject. I was interviewed by Ben just before the conference, gave him background reports & info and details of others he could contact. 

The article was written by asking BAME naturalists for their views on the topic. This was interesting to read and illuminating for most people interviewed. However, this approach assumed that just because someone was Minority Ethnic and an expert in nature, that they were an also an expert in race, which was not correct. All they could do was give their individual view, which sometimes was a odds with the research and experts in race equality, diversity and inclusion but left unchallenged. For example the issue of whether BAME should be used was I think a diversion from the actual issue, also giving the impression to the white readership that Minority Ethnic people were divided when this is not true for the majority. Also the experts didn't have the chance to give their views in response though I understand that this was probably

I think in discussions like this should include at least sections that are "Black led" race experts. 

The Conference was a great success and the Conference Report is at!AlHI1zymOkP6lFciU1tQX0r56Nmn with additional documents in Appendix 1.1!AlHI1zymOkP6lFUbVyvJ1OfT1c5r and Appendix 1.2!AlHI1zymOkP6lHO2pVQbVZxh3mn3

If you are interested in trying to make those out in nature from more diverse backgrounds, then please connect with me on LinkedIn (Mya-Rose Birdgirl Craig and ask to join the Race Equality in Nature Group. Please can you also share this information, so that we can get as many people as possible from all backgrounds involved (nature organisations and people working in ethnic minority communities, health & education).

About the Author

Birdgirl Mya-Rose Craig in Antarctica
Photograph copyright Young Birder Birdgirl Mya-Rose Craig

Mya-Rose Craig is a 14 year old young British Bangladeshi birder, naturalist, conservationist, environmentalist, activist, writer and speaker. She is based near Bristol and writes the successful Birdgirl Blog, with posts about birding and conservation from around the world. She loved seeing Mountain Gorillas in East Africa and Penguins in Antarctica over Christmas 2015, her 7th continent.

Mya-Rose was a Bristol European Green Capital Ambassador along with Kevin McCloud, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Tony Juniper, Simon King, Miranda Krestovnikoff and Shaun the Sheep! See the full list of Bristol Ambassadors. She has also been listed with the singer songwriter George Ezra and actress Maisie Williams from Game of Thrones as one of Bristol's most influential young people
She organised a conference in June 2016 aiming to increase the ethnic diversity in nature. Please connect with her on LinkedIn (Mya-Rose Birdgirl Craig) so that she can invite you to join the Race Equality in Nature LinkedIn Group and be part of the change. Please like her Birdgirl Facebook Page and follow her on Birdgirl Twitter

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