Saving the rainforest may seem like an overwhelming project, but kids can actually have a broader influence on the issue than one might think. By learning more about the creatures and people of the rainforest, as well as the issues affecting it, and by encouraging the adults around them to care about these issues, kids can have a lot of sway. Programs such as the Kids Saving the Rainforest activist group have demonstrated that even children can get involved and fight to save this resource.
Join Kids Saving the Rainforest, an activist group specifically designed for kids, by logging onto their website. Started by two 9 year-olds, Kids Saving the Rainforest runs several programs that children can participate in. For instance, the program publishes and distributes a pamphlet called, “10 reasons not to feed the monkeys,” which educates businesses and tourists on the Titi monkey, an endangered animal that was the group’s original focus. Kids Saving the Rainforest members also receive educational material and updates on the group’s efforts. Lastly, KSR hosts an adopt-a-tree program, where for a fee youngsters can have a tree planted in their or their friend’s name.
Have kids participate in letter-writing campaigns. The Rainforest Action Network, an activist group, has a specific part of their website devoted to letter-writing campaigns for children that lists businesses that contribute to deforestation, a summary of why their business practices may be dangerous for the environment and a sample letter for kids to copy if they wish.
Educate kids about the rainforest. Log onto websites such as the Rainforest Alliance, which allows children to explore the rainforest and the issues surrounding it, through online games and activities. Not only does the website explore rainforest species and environments, games such as the “Track It Back” feature allow kids to explore where specific food products come from and how they are harvested. Other games let children get to know human rainforest residents and how they live and work.
Be careful about the amount of waste you create and ask your child to help you. Simply reusing scrap paper and containers helps save trees by decreasing the need for new paper products. Additionally, encourage your child to consider asking her teachers to start a class recycling program if one does not already exist.
Tips & Warnings
The more you show an active interest in this issue, the more your child will feel encouraged.
Make sure to indicate that saving the rainforest is not something that can happen over night, so that your child does not get discouraged.