I can’t believe I’m actually able to write this, but earlier this week, my ‘Connections With Nature’ project WON the WeNaturalists Nature Storyteller of the Year award.
Now, I’ve been nominated for a few awards over the 11 years that I’ve been blogging, but this is the first time I’ve actually won! After being Highly Commended a couple of times, and ‘Judges’ first runner-up’, a friend once joked; “it’s like you’re always the bridesmaid, never the bride.” Well, stick a veil on me and pass the champers!
While it’s wonderful to have been the face of this project, it’s not really a ‘me’ win this time around — it’s a Wildlife Blogger Crowd win! And furthermore, the $1,000 prize money means we’ve reached our fundraising goal, and are able to donate a laptop to Talek Mixed Day and Boarding School in Narok, Kenya via Wildlife Blogger Crowd member Jack Lekishon.
As I stated at the end of my entry to the awards: “My own project started with a WiFi connection, it led to connecting with others in a digital community, and saw us reflecting on our personal connections with nature.”
“Those connections have continued to branch outwards, across many types of friendships, events and fundraising activities — and it would be wonderful to give the pupils at Talek Vegan School the chance to make their own connections through the help of new technology. Perhaps this will also enable them to tell their stories, too.”
Take a look at the image highlights above from the project I submitted (you can see the full project on the WeNaturalists community forum).
Thank you to the team and jury at WeNaturalists, my fellow nominees and finalists, and everyone who’s been a part of this journey.
I am truly honoured to be recognised as Nature Storyteller of the Year, and can’t wait to update you all with news of how the donation to Talek School works out.
It takes a village.
What’s Next for Connections With Nature?
The next stop on the Connections With Nature book tour is WWT Welney! I’ll be giving a book talk and signing at the Welney Wetland Centre (an amazing nature reserve that I’ve written about recently) on the 25th October, and I hope to have a few special guests join me, in the form of fellow book contributors!
Please come along and say ‘Hi’ if you can; it would be great to share more about this project with you in person.