Saba Conservation Foundation (SCF) held a “Wild 4 Nature” event Tuesday afternoon at the Trail Shop in Windwardside, reports The Daily Herald. While designed as an after-school outdoor learning activity for local youth, the event quickly turned into an appreciated public event for all tourists visiting the shop that day.
The nature show was in part the brainchild of SCF nature park ranger Sue Hurrell, who coordinates the foundation’s after-school youth projects. She holds regular outdoor activities and needed an outdoor seminar space. She found the perfect spot behind the Trail Shop, but it needed some sprucing up. SCF obtained support from several local organisations to turn it into a multipurpose, outdoor teaching space. The newly upgraded terrace has tables and benches where the youth can engage in learning activities and even a stone-carved waterbed, which proved quite popular with the children on the day of the opening. The outdoor space makes use of the Trail Shop facilities and is next to a nature trail where the children can see many of the plants and insects mentioned by the rangers.
For the opening event, Hurrell organised a nature fair featuring stands with the work of the various nature-research interns working with SCF. Many interns had already interacted with the youth in various activities, so this was an occasion to bring them all together. It was also an opportunity to give all participating youth camelback backpacks purchased by Hurrell with money recently donated by Saba University School of Medicine’s Alpha Omega Phi Honour and Service Society.
The youngsters were thrilled with the packs and put them immediately into use during an “insect discovery expedition.” One of the interns led them in an insect collection walk and later identified and explained what they had found. “The youth don’t just have to listen to me; they can take advantage of the interns’ expert knowledge. This is the main driving force of such events; to discover and use available resources,” said Hurrell, who was thrilled with the outcome of the event.
Another SCF intern presented on birds the children can see around their homes and others made presentations on marine life. Noticing how much the youth enjoyed the rockcarved waterbed on the new terrace, SCF ranger James Johnson promised the children to take them to two naturally formed rockcarved waterbeds up in the mountain, sites known only by few on the island.