In May 2013, students from all over the country came to Jean Lafitte National Historical Park and Preserve near New Orleans, Louisiana, for a National Park Service/National Geographic BioBlitz. Together, they developed a sense of awe about the natural world as they worked together with volunteer scientists, teachers, and other community members to find and identify as many species of plants, animals, microbes, fungi, and other organisms as possible within the 24-hour event.
E.O. Wilson has said, “There is no greater high than discovery.” With the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation’s collaborative storytelling project, Inspired by Nature, we aim to capture the moment of personal discovery and transformation that occurs as young people connect with the natural world at BioBlitz. As the Foundation works to foster a new generation of enthusiastic explorers and informed citizens, we hope these stories will inspire and connect us all around the importance of environmental conservation and biodiversity.
In future collaborative storytelling endeavors, the Foundation will use interviews, oral histories, documentary photography, and video and web-based projects to explore moments of discovery. We hope that by sharing these stories, we will strengthen our individual and collective experience of the importance of our biological heritage, and inform and inspire a grassroots network of future environmental stewards.
Individuals and groups interested in participating in our Collaborative Storytelling Project can contact the Foundation at firstname.lastname@example.org.