What does it take to change the way people relate to nature?
Every year Rare trains local conservation leaders around the world in methods to inspire change at the local level and shift behaviors that are destructive to the environment. These Rare Conservation Fellows manage campaigns that use traditional marketing techniques to build pride around natural resources and essentially sell conservation. The campaigns focus on reducing threats that communities can influence like deforestation, overfishing and illegal poaching. The fellows adapt demonstrated conservation solutions to the nuances of their own communities. The fellows use social marketing messages to inform the targeted segments of the communities by getting to know the local people, meeting with key stake holders and listening to community needs. The fellows provide training in more sustainable practices, offer economic incentives and give the local communities access to new tools and technologies. The fellows inspire people to take pride in the species and habitats that make their communities unique. With the fellows’ guidance, communities in more than 50 countries are taking charge and managing their own natural resources.
Watch the video:
In this video eight fellows reflect on the question of what it takes to change people’s attitudes towards conservation issues from their own experiences in the field. Meet Elaina Todd from Guam, Angkana Makvilai from Thailand, Gankhuyag Balbar and Bolortsetseg Sanjaa from Mongolia, d’Shan Maycock from the Bahamas, Margaret Tabuanakawai from Fiji, Gildas Andriamala from Madagascar and Santi Saypanya from Lao PDR.
The fellows discuss the use of everything from text messages (also known as short message service or SMS) to campaign posters, T-shirts to adorable and now iconic mascots. Drawing attention to a campaign issue often means embracing new technologies and innovating creative communication strategies. The fellows worked with local partner groups, students and community leaders in order to create impactful messages and to give the communities ownership of their future. The fellows also celebrate their personal discovery and change as they grow into social marketers for behavior change and conservation. People either deter or drive conservation, after all.
“Communities in more than 50 countries are taking charge and managing their own natural resources.”
To here stories from the Rare Conservation Fellows click here.