Following the announcement of Teck’s $500,000 support for Earth Rangers initiatives, the conservation group has already confirmed its visit in early 2023. Earth Rangers’ program aims to teach kids about biodiversity and to inspire them to become actively involved in local initiatives.
The collaboration between Teck Resources Limited and Earth Rangers builds on the existing partnership with increased funding from Teck of $500,000 to support expanded opportunities to engage youth and protect Canadian wildlife, including the following Earth Rangers initiatives:
Wildlife Adoption Programs to raise funds for conservation work supporting animals in the regions where Teck operates
A new Earth Rangers Youth Volunteer Program to encourage and provide access to conservation-focused volunteer opportunities for youth aged 13 – 18
Earth Rangers School Assembly Program, which will visit 25 schools in communities near Teck’s Canadian operations annually
“We’re pleased to work with Earth Rangers on this innovative partnership to engage youth to get involved and care about conservation in communities like Merritt and others,” said Matt Parrilla, general manager of Teck Highland Valley Copper Operations.
Earth Rangers is the kids’ conservation organization, committed to instilling environmental knowledge, positivity, and the confidence to take action in every child in Canada. We do this through a suite of programming that children can participate in at school, at home, and in their communities.
“Kids join Earth Rangers because they love animals and want to protect them,” said Earth Rangers President Tova Barocas.
“Our partnership with Teck has always focused on empowering them to do that by learning about and supporting important conservation work in Teck communities and across Canada. With the increased support announced today, we’ll be extending our programming beyond elementary school and into the teen years, by providing impactful environmental volunteer opportunities for middle and high school students.”
Barocas told the Herald that Earth Rangers has been to Merritt a number of times in the past, noting that there are about 250 kids from Merritt that are already members of the Earth Rangers.
“We’ve been visiting Merritt on and off since 2015,” she said. “We did some virtual presentations during the (COVID-19) pandemic, but now we’re really excited to be back live.”
Earth Rangers is already planning a “tour” of the elementary schools within the Nicola Valley in early 2023. Merritt Bench Elementary, Diamondvale Elementary, Nicola Canford Elementary, and Merritt Central Elementary are already slated for a visit from Earth Rangers in mid February
“It’s kind of an educational, environmental assembly for the whole school,” she described the visit. “All the kids pile into the gym and we put on what is actually a really cool, fun, and inspirational show.”
The presentation includes two presenters, and an audio visual component for the kids to learn about biodiversity and conservation in Canada. The highlight, however, of the whole presentation is the live animals exhibit.
“That’s the real exciting part of the show for the students,” she said. “Each show has the inclusion of four live animals. It’s really to fire that connection kids have with animals that inspire them to really want to protect them.”
The usual animals that make an appearance during the programs are
- water monitors
- red foxes
- pine martens
To date, the Teck and Earth Rangers partnership has supported more than 150 Earth Rangers school assemblies, reaching approximately 50,000 students. Conservation programs supported include the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s efforts to restore and protect open grassland areas of the Kootenay River Ranch Conservation Area in B.C. which is an important habitat for bighorn sheep, American badgers, and other wildlife.
“We’re pleased to work with Earth Rangers on this innovative partnership to protect wildlife in regions where we operate and beyond while engaging youth to get involved and care about conservation,” said Teck CEO Jonathan Price.
“As we work towards our goal to be a nature positive company, we recognize the importance of building partnerships with organizations like Earth Rangers and look forward to what we will accomplish together.”
This partnership supports Teck’s goal to become a nature positive company by 2030. Becoming nature positive means that, by 2030, Teck’s conservation, protection and restoration of land and biodiversity will exceed the disturbance caused by its mining activities from a 2020 baseline. In doing so, Teck will conserve or rehabilitate at least three hectares for every one hectare affected by its mining activities.
For more information on Teck’s Nature Positive Goal, please visit https://www.teck.com/sustainability/sustainability-topics/nature-positive/.