Living with Wildlife Symposium

Living with Wildlife Symposium

The second annual Living with Wildlife Symposium was hosted in partnership by the Clayoquot Biosphere Trust and the Raincoast Education Society as a celebratory wrap-up event for everyone involved in the ‘Connecting Students with Wildlife Program’ (CSWP).

This year, CSWP has been delivered in grades 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, and 10 in five schools across the west coast. The Living with Wildlife Symposium is a unique opportunity to bring students together across the region to extend their learnings from the program and apply their wildlife monitoring and tracking knowledge and skills in a fun, inclusive environment. This year, the Living with Wildlife Symposium, brought together over 110 students from Ahousaht, Tofino, Ty-Histanis, Esowista, Opitsaht, Ucluelet and Hitacu.

Goals of the Symposium

  • Provide a forum for CSWP students to share their learnings and hear from experts to build the connection between their work and big picture research
  • Promote relationship building between students of different ages from different schools and communities
  • Facilitate a fun and real-learning event that crosses elementary and secondary schools to support healthy transitions between grades and schools

Symposium Activities

Over the course of the day, students heard from our keynote speaker, Gisele Martin, who discussed  Nuu-chah-nulth perspectives and teachings on the relationship between humans, wildlife, and the environment. After Gisele’s presentation we took the students outside to get to know each other playing wildlife games. After lunch the students broke into their animal clans and navigated through eight different field stations in the school forest. This activity gave students a chance to demonstrate their tracking skills and knowledge gained from the CSWP program. The field stations were hosted by Bob Hansen, co-founder of the CSWP, Kaylyn Kwasnecha, CSWP lead, and ten Parks Canada summer students.

Thank you to everyone involved in CSWP and the Living with Wildlife Symposium!