It is hard to explain to those coming into the wild animal field just how much things have changed through time. As my career has transformed over the years I am amazed at just what things remain constant.
One of my aspirations as a writer is to convey information and motivation to others so that my legacy will be to connect people with animals so they will care about, learn to understand them, conserve them, and so change the world.
But I am not the only one who has had that goal.
Like many who have become associated with zoos and conservation, one of my earliest addictions beyond animals was reading books about them.
My favorite author at the time was Gerald Durrell. His brother, Lawrence Durrell was more known in the literary world but in the hearts of future conservationists and animal people worldwide, it was his brother Gerry who motivated many to pursue careers for the benefit of endangered species.
This year marked the 50th Anniversary of the Durrell Conservation Trust.
I am also an alumna from the Trust and its International Training Centre. My training took place at the zoo on the island of Jersey (which is located in the English channel between France and England) and I lived on the grounds in Les Noyers Manor and Les Augres Manor when I did some work at the trust.
I remember when I arrived–it was like a dream come true.
This year I was not able to be present for the gala and surrounding events but I was present at the 25th Anniversary.
This morning I’ve been watching the video from one of the celebration events and remember watching Gerald Durrell (affectionately known as Gerry) live as he spoke way back when.
I remember thinking how amazing it was that I knew and worked with many of the world’s great people involved in the conservation of animals–and also to know many animals and endangered species on a personal basis.
My stay on Jersey was supposed to be four months but I stayed over ten and was proud to be part of the handful of people invited to attend.
Today the world has changed and so have the threats to animals and their habitats but what has not changed is the impact of one person who had a dream.
I’ve been one of the lucky people who has lived a dream. I wonder what yours is and if you will pursue it. I wonder if mine will have the impact I dream of.
Only time will tell but if you have the time and motivation–watch this long video and perhaps it will inspire you to take action in a new direction.