Let It Grow - European Association of Zoos and Aquaria, Botanical Gardens Conservation International, European network of science centres and museums (Europe)
Let It Grow combines the strength of zoos, aquaria, museums and botanical gardens to engage people in protecting native species in their own backyards.
The Let It Grow campaign aims to get people and nature working together across the continent.
Biodiversity is under threat everywhere, and mostly from the pressures we humans put on it. Worldwide, millions of people are moving into cities, agriculture is becoming more intensive, and we are not paying enough attention to the needs of nature and the services it provides for us. While most people know of the dangers facing species in so-called “biodiversity hotspots” like rainforests, the threats facing native species in Europe are less known. Due to the role biodiversity plays in human lives - providing us with food, oxygen, clean water, natural beauty, medicines, protecting areas from fire and erosion and much more- the loss of species in Europe could have a detrimental effect the quality of life. Let It Grow aims to demonstrate the importance of biodiversity; and encourages people to make space for nature and give native species the chance to recover and thrive.
By working together, the Let It Grow coalition is able to reach millions of people across the continent.
The Let It Grow campaign is organised by the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria (EAZA) together with Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) and the European network of science centres and museums (Ecsite). These three associations unite some of the most progressive science engagement, conservation and research institutions in the world. By working together, the campaign has access to a vast amount of knowledge and experience as well as being able to reach millions of people. As the campaign focusses on local species, collaboration between institutions situated in the same area was invaluable.
Awareness was raised not only by informing visitors about local species; but also by involving them in biodiversity measuring activities which showcases how rich the flora and fauna of Europe is. The public was also encouraged to actively increase biodiversity by setting up “left spaces” on balconies, terraces, gardens and community spaces to give native species the chance to grow and thrive.
Due to the collaboration between EAZA, BGCI and Ecsite, the campaign has spread beyond Europe. Currently the campaign has:
- 238 participants from 43 different countries.
- Hosted initiatives and activities across the world simultaneously on May 22 2017, the International Day of Biological Diversity.
- Produced thousands of insect hotels and birdhouses.
- Measured biodiversity in various European countries.
- Been displayed in artistic sand sculptures, inspired story books and has engaged citizens of all ages.