Katie Grimmond, 21, a student from the University of Aberdeen has joined a bold, new national youth advisory group to lead the discussion about how young people can be part of protecting and making the most of Scotland’s natural environment.
Called ReRoute, the advisory group of young people aged 13-23 is part of a partnership between Scottish Natural Heritage and Young Scot to help meet Scotland’s ambitions as a green nation.
Katie is currently studying Biological Sciences at the University of Aberdeen and works part-time as a student ambassador. Katie is passionate about nature and would like to see young people have more opportunities to make positive contributions to biodiversity. Katie believes young people in Scotland can play a vital role in helping to protect Scotland’s natural environment.
As part of the three year partnership, Katie will encourage young people to contribute towards improving biodiversity and act as an advocate for the natural environment at a local, regional and national level. Katie will also encourage young people across the area to enjoy the outdoors.
At the end of the project, Katie and the other ReRoute members will make recommendations to Scottish Natural Heritage and the Scottish Government on how to effectively engage young people in nature and Scotland’s natural environment.
Katie said: “I’m really excited to be involved with ReRoute - it’s a great way to develop new skills, gain experience and get young people in Aberdeen passionate about nature. I think it’s important to help young people across Scotland understand that everything is connected, we all need to work together to protect our ecosystem. This is a great way to increase awareness of the benefits of nature across the wider community. I’m looking forward to working with the other group members to build greater awareness of Scotland’s natural environment.
In a recent nature survey conducted by Young Scot, 89% of young people considered nature and the outdoors important and 74% of the participants said they would like to learn more about it. As a result, Katie and the other group members across the country will work together to design exciting new rewards to encourage young people to engage with Scotland’s natural environment.
The panel will focus on the importance of the Scottish Government’s 2020 Challenge for Scotland’s Biodiversity: A Route Map to 2020. The Biodiversity Route Map to 2020 will help meet Scotland’s international biodiversity obligations. It is designed to maintain nature and support the many benefits it provides us in the shape of clean air, flood protection, climate change resilience, health and wellbeing and a thriving economy.
ReRoute are currently looking for more young people to join them. If you are interested or know someone who may be, please visit young.scot or snh.gov.uk