Ensuring a healthy future for our planet

We recognise that the future of conservation is dependent on a community of committed individuals. We nurture young people to engage with nature and make positive choices for the health of our planet.

We also support promising conservationists around the world to tackle some of the most pressing challenges we face.

Engaging young people with nature

We work with children to build their knowledge and understanding of the environmental challenges facing our planet and develop the skills to address them.

Conservation leadership as a force for change

We identify and develop networks of conservation leaders who can rise to the challenge of a rapidly changing world and champion a sustainable future.

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  • Engaging young people
  • Conservation leadership as a force for change

Spring Alive: inspiring young people with a passion for the natural world


One of the most effective ways to bring about change for our planet is to inspire a love of nature from a young age. We work with children to build their knowledge and understanding of the environmental challenges facing the world, and develop the skills to do something about them.  

 

Bird migration connects different continents and cultures and enables us to come together with one common voice for nature. Spring Alive, BirdLife’s longstanding children’s programme, empowers young people to act for nature across Europe, Central Asia and Africa. Over the last 13 years, we have increased awareness and understanding and motivated children, families and teachers to work together and step up for birds and the environment.   

12 million

people empowered to take positive action

117,000

children engaged through Spring Alive events

55,000

new ambassadors for nature

Every migratory season, Spring Alive encourages children to have fun observing, tracking and celebrating the incredible journeys of seven bird species including storks, cuckoos, swifts and bee-eaters, as they travel between their breeding and wintering grounds. Uniting around a different theme each year, and focusing on the obstacles birds face on their journeys, Spring Alive is a powerful symbol of our interconnectedness across oceans and continents. For example, 2019’s theme – how to prevent birds from colliding with windows – sparked a cross-border media movement that reached over five million people and prevented hundreds – if not thousands – of bird fatalities.

Spring Alive’s fun and cost-effective activities include classroom resources, youth clubs and community events, as well as outreach, citizen science and adult education initiatives. Coordinated by OTOP (BirdLife in Poland) and uniting over 54 BirdLife Partners working in key wildlife habitats, Spring Alive has empowered over 12 million people to take positive action via media outreach. Our events have engaged over 117,000 children, 2200 teachers and 55,000 new ambassadors for nature, and have inspired hundreds of people to become members of BirdLife Partners in their country.

Conservation Leadership Programme: nurturing our most talented and innovative young conservationists


‘The Conservation Leadership Programme has helped me a lot in my development as a conservationist. The most remarkable way it helped me was to improve my knowledge and empower me, which gave me the confidence I needed to act.’ – Tatiana Pongiluppi, CLP graduate

2,500

Conservation leaders

130

Species discovered or rediscovered

75

Globally important sites for nature protected

30 years ago, BirdLife launched the Conservation Leadership Programme (CLP), a ground-breaking training initiative which invests in some of the most promising early-career professionals in conservation. Working in partnership with Fauna & Flora International and the Wildlife Conservation Society, we provide grants, training, mentoring and internships to individuals who represent the future of conservation. 

To date, the programme has nurtured the careers of over 2,500 people in more than 100 countries, who now make up a thriving global community of conservation leaders. Collectively, these trailblazers have discovered or rediscovered 130 species, helped protect 75 globally important sites for nature and founded at least 25 civil society organisations. Many are now pre-eminent figures in their fields.   

 Tatiana Pongiluppi now runs a birdwatching company in Brazil, and leads ecotourism expeditions all over the country. Thirteen years ago, she had just graduated university and started a CLP-funded internship with SAVE Brasil (BirdLife in Brazil), where she travelled around the country, educating local communities about bird conservation and conducting bird surveys.  Through this internship, she became an expert in bird identification, and in 2009 was granted a CLP Future Conservationist Awards to set up an Education Centre for bird conservation in Serra do Urubu, an Important Bird & Biodiversity Area and one of the last significant remnants of Atlantic Forest in northeast Brazil.

In 2014, she received a CLP Follow-Up Award to promote Serra do Urubu through ecotourism, birdwatching and community awareness. She sees tourism as an effective way of connecting people with nature and linking conservation with economic development and social justice in local communities. Her company has grown and now leads birdwatching expeditions all around Brazil. Tatiana credits much of her success to the CLP.

‘After my team received the Future Conservationist Award in 2009, I attended the CLP-funded Conservation Management & Leadership course in China. This was a life-changing experience and I really wish every young biologist could have this incredible opportunity. Beyond the knowledge and skills I learned there, meeting the CLP management team, trainers and other participants gave me a wider view of the conservation world and inspired me to use different, creative ways to deal with conservation problems here in Brazil. All the skills that I developed during the course, such as leadership, mentoring, self-confidence, strategic thinking and communication, are still helping me today in my daily life.’

Strengthening the BirdLife Partnership

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Mobilising civil society at the grassroots

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