Saturday, 8 October 2016

A breath of fresh air: City of Grand Rapids aims to reconnect children with nature

A breath of fresh air: City of Grand Rapids aims to reconnect children with nature

The full article can be read through the hyperlink above


An annual event hosted by the mayor's youth council, KidsSpeak brings together local children to focus on a particular issue, ultimately creating written testimonies that are presented to the community....... Some nervous and some polished, these student presenters bravely expressed their thoughts about the city's natural areas, saying, "green spaces are not something you can brush aside" and "losing [green things] in the city means losing our compassion for the world around us, and ultimately, each other." Many expressed regret over the loss of their connection to nature and time spent in parks and playgrounds. "We don't play outside anymore," said one presenter. "We are disregarding natural spaces more and more."

One younger student expressed her views clearly and with conviction. "No playgrounds? Don't ever say no playgrounds to me," she said. "How would the city look like if there were no trees, flowers or wildlife?…It would look dark and gloomy." ..... "My hope for this city is that we not only maintain our parks, but proliferate them. Through that we can allow more children to have experiences of joy and compassion…If we understand the world around us. We can understand each other better,"
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