HRH The Princess Royal got hands-on at Edinburgh Zoo yesterday during her visit to help launch the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland’s vision for the future of conservation education.
The Princess Royal, who has been a royal patron of the charity since 2009, came face to face with a lesser hedgehog tenrec as she learned more about the Society’s plans to ensure a new generation of learners are engaged with conservation.
On the day, The Princess Royal also presented two newly-created Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) awards. Duncan Crewe was named Young Conservationist of the Year for his volunteering efforts as part of the Zoo’s ZEBRA programme and Corstorphine Primary School received the Conservation Ambassador Award which recognises their support of the work the Society has carried out in recent years.
Charlotte Macdonald, RZSS director of conservation and living collections, said: “It was very exciting to welcome The Princess Royal to Edinburgh Zoo yesterday and to launch our new vision for the future of conservation education.
“With the existence of so many species under threat it is critical that people of all ages understand how they can help to protect both the wildlife on their doorstep and across the world.
“We already have many successful education initiatives in place, including our very popular summer school and our recent partnership with Corstorphine Primary School, and we hope our new plans will inspire the next generation of learners to move from empathy to action and encourage their friends and family to do the same.
“In the year of the young person, it’s particularly heartening to see the great work Duncan Crewe and Corstorphine Primary School are doing and I’d like to congratulate both winners for their awards.”
Pamela Briggs, Headteacher at Corstorphine Primary School, said: “We are delighted to receive the Conservation Ambassador Award. As a school, we want our pupils to realise the importance of conservation and sustainability throughout their learning journey. This award will mean a lot to our school community.”