Hope is Here!
Hope is Here!
Connecting children to nature is a vital element of the conservation mission. The story of Hope was immortalized in the book “Hope is Here” written by well-known children’s author Cristina Kessler of St. John. The book tells a conservation story to children and has been used as a teaching tool on the U.S. Virgin Islands where Hope spent the winter months and in schools on the Delmarva Peninsula where Hope stopped during spring migration. Through the book, Hope became a tangible symbol of conservation for the many species that migrate thousands of miles between breeding and winter grounds.
Over a short period of time, by just living out her fascinating life, Hope unknowingly taught scientists important lessons about the requirements of whimbrels through the annual cycle, educated the broader community about the challenges faced by migratory birds, demonstrated that local actions can contribute to international movements, and left a legacy that will educate children for generations.
Hope on her winter territory among the mangroves of Great Pond on 26 August 2016. Photo by Lisa Yntema.
Hope was tracked for more than 50,000 miles (80,000 kilometers) back and forth four times between her breeding site on the Mackenzie River in far western Canada and her wintering site on Great Pond.
Children from Pungoteague Elementary School in Virginia with “Hope is Here” book. Photo by Bryan Watts.