Robert Bateman, Steve Nash and Nature Canada Invite Youth to Get Outdoors and Get To Know
April 21, 2009 (Various)- Renowned artist Robert Bateman has partnered with BC-raised athlete and two-time NBA MVP Steve Nash to issue an Earth Day invitation to Canadian youth.
Along with Premier Partner Nature Canada, Wildlife Habitat Canada, Parks Canada and numerous other organizations and sponsors, Bateman and Nash are urging kids to get outside and “Get to Know” their wild neighbours by participating in the 9th annual Robert Bateman Get to Know Contest.
Launch events will be held nationwide, at public museums, zoos and aquariums, on Earth Day (Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009) and are sponsored by Walmart Canada and Bushnell, long-time supporters of the Get to Know Program.
Bateman launched this unique, all-Canadian contest in 2000 to inspire youth to go outdoors and “get to know” their wild neighbours. The philosophy of the program is that caring about biodiversity begins in our own backyards. Over the last decade, the contest has received tens of thousands of nature-themed art and writing entries from Canadian youth. For 2009, a new digital photography category is being added to the contest, in partnership with Panasonic.
Steve Nash is a strong supporter of healthy living choices among youth and has advanced environmental and conservation work around North America, so a partnership with the now binational Get to Know Program was a natural fit. Nash formed the Steve Nash Foundation in 2001 to support organizations that create educational, health and empowerment opportunities for children and youth. (More about the Steve Nash Foundation is at stevenash.org).
Nash says, “Being outside is our best connection to each other — we’re all on the same earth, regardless of circumstance, position or chance. By getting outdoors and learning firsthand about the environment we can grow an understanding of what the planet needs to be healthy, and start to care about it enough to make a better, more sustainable future for all of us.”
Winners of this year’s Get to Know Contest will receive fantastic prizes, including the chance to have their artwork featured on Wildlife Habitat Canada's first ever Youth Wildlife Habitat Conservation Stamp; a one-week trip to Parks Canada’s Palisades Stewardship Education Centre in Jasper, Alberta; their work published in the nationally distributed 2010 Robert Bateman Get to Know Contest Calendar or the TD Friends of the Environment Get to Know Contest Calendar; Panasonic Lumix® digital cameras; art supplies from Opus; books from Scholastic and much more!
To prepare for the United Nations’ International Year of Biodiversity in 2010, the focus of this year’s contest is biodiversity and the celebration of the many interdependent relationships among the diversity of life on Earth. Our planet is home to a dizzying array of wonderful, mysterious life forms and the Get to Know Program hopes youth who participate in this contest will discover a sense of connection with the natural world.
About the Robert Bateman Get to Know Program
Based on Bateman’s philosophy that “caring begins with knowing,” the Robert Bateman Get to Know Program seeks to encourage young Canadians to “get to know their wild neighbours.” The program works to engage youth with plants and animals that live in their communities as a first step toward healthy outdoor activity, an appreciation of their local natural world, and a spirit of environmental stewardship.
For a media kit, including videos and mp3 clip[s]: www.gettoknow.ca/en/contest/mediakit.php
For more information on the Get to Know Program, please contact Mary Krupa-Clark, Director of the Get to Know Program, at (250) 861-9474 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on this year’s contest, please contact Cecilia Velasco, Contest Coordinator, at (250) 483-6684 or email@example.com.
For more information on the importance of connecting people with nature, please contact Chris Sutton, Communications Manager, at (613) 562-3447 ext. 248 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Additional information on the Get to Know Program, including a complete list of contest sponsors and Earth Day contest launch locations, can be found at www.GetToKnow.ca.