Case Statement


Mission: The mission of A-Team for Wildlife is to serve youth saving endangered species through education, inspiration, guidance, and engaging them in individualized fund-raising activities.

The next, new generation will have to face the greatest environmental challenges of all time.  Doesn't it make sense to teach students to become environmental literate, so that they can successfully deal with these challenges?  We believe in taking environmental education to schools, in school assemblies, across the country.

The Challenge

As the earth’s human population continues to grow, so do environmental problems.   Habitat destruction and Climate Change is threatening our ability to provide for humanity’s basic needs.   At 1,000 times greater than the normal extinction rate, loss of biodiversity has reached proportions that define this time as the greatest Extinction Event since the disappearance of the dinosaurs. It is now known as the 6th Mass Extinction, and the first one to be caused by humans. 25% of all wildlife are now threatened with extinction within the next 20 years. Today’s children are the last generation that can save the many species of exotic animals that we all know and love… for time is running out. The many threats to both humanity and the world of wildlife that Climate Change represents has finally been acknowledged, by not only the overwhelming numbers of scientists, but by everyone from the Pope to the Pentagon, including the nearly 200 countries who developed a plan to deal with Climate Change at the 2015 Paris Accord.  The next new generation in today’s schools must become environmentally literate to deal adequately with the challenges they face. Sadly, most of today’s students are far behind the environmentally literacy level desired¹.

The social universe that is raising these children largely lacks the ability to provide adequate environmental education.  Studies consistently reveal that the U.S. public suffers from a tremendous environmental literacy gap that appears to be increasing rather than decreasing. For example, two-thirds of the public fail even a basic environmental quiz and a whopping 88 percent of the public fail a basic energy quiz . These same studies found that 45 million Americans think the ocean is a source of fresh water and 130 million believe that hydropower is America's top energy source.

In 2010, the Kaiser Family Foundation released a report citing an increase in the time that 8- to 18-year olds spend with electronic media (e.g., television content, music/audio content, computers, video games). The amount of time increased from 6 hours and 21 minutes per day in 2004 to 7 hours and 38 minutes per day in 2009. The proliferation of electronic media access and use, along with other barriers that limit outdoor play and time spent in nature (e.g., parental fear of abduction or harm, traffic dangers, lack of natural space), restrict children’s access to the social, emotional, physical, and intellectual benefits of nature. There are many consequences to indoor childhoods, including a documented epidemic of childhood obesity and other negative impacts on health. In addition to the tremendous health benefits of time spent in nature, studies suggest that positive experiences in nature in childhood have a strong positive relationship with pro-environmental attitudes and behaviors as adults².

13%?

A report on a new study by the California State Department of Education released in 2015, called, “A Blueprint for Environmental Literacy”,  states that a recent survey of school principals revealed that only 13% felt that they had adequately incorporated environmental education in their school³.

Further, it must be considered that 70% of today’s conservationists will be gone within 20 years, due to aging and retirement.  All of those conservationists must be replaced, and many more will be needed to enact conservation programs in the near future. As natural environments decline, more conservationists (and conservation-minded people) are needed than ever before.  Indeed, only about 10% of world species have been studied and indications are that the IUCN Red List of endangered species would be tripled if more were known about more species. A proactive effort to create students of conservation is needed to insure an adequate supply of professional conservationists in the future.

Youth - It is Their World Too

Half of the world’s population are children. Today’s generation is increasingly concerned about the state of the world they are about to inherit. Youth of the last generation experienced being invited for the first time into social movements as participants.  Today’s generation is going further, asserting themselves as change-makers; stepping forward as leaders in both social and environmental activism. Kids today are not just joining in, they are taking the lead.

Change-making youth leaders are raising consciousness like never before. There is nothing more powerful, more universal than a child’s love for animals.  That connection leads to wanting to save endangered species, their habitats, and eventually to preserving a healthy natural environment that can sustain us all.  It also can lead the way for motivating children to realize their ability to change the world. A-Team for Wildlife is focused specifically on saving animals and their habitats - a theme more readily embraced by children of all ages.

The need is great and the need is now.  The youth of today need a vigorous increase in environmental education and support to provide them the environmental literacy they require to understand and deal with the future of their world.  They want it, too.   A-Team For Wildlife seeks to provide excellent school presentations and content to meet this need.

Vision: A-Team for Wildlife will be the leading provider of high quality environmental content and programs in pursuit of producing environmental literacy in students across the country and beyond. We will not only educate but motivate activism with youth-generated fund-raising by Local A-Teams (clubs) in every community in the country and many countries around the world, supporting and rewarding young achievers with life-changing Exciting Educational Wildlife Experiences, and offering record-breaking sums as donations to endangered species preservation programs in the campaign to reverse extinction trends.

Goals:

  1. Reverse the trend towards extinction of the many endangered animals who suffer from habitat loss, poaching, and declining quality of life, through public education and funding of effective conservation efforts with an emphasis on students and schools.
  2. Challenged by a global ecosystem in decline, A-Team for Wildlife will nurture the development of the next generation of conservationists to insure sufficient quality and quantity of new professionals entering the field to meet the needs of both wildlife and humankind.

Objectives:

  • Through our school assembly presentation program: 1) educate students about the issues of endangered wildlife and the impact on people’s lives. 2) motivate students to join as members of A-Team of Wildlife and form or join Local A-Teams (clubs) to create fund-raising campaigns, further their own conservation education, and provide public education about endangered species.
  • Establish and maintain a youth leadership council of proven prodigies of conservation, known as the “International A-Team” to serve as an advisory board to the board of directors, and to inspire all children to pursue conservation education and fund-raising for endangered wildlife.
  • Offer to provide to our “International A-Team” members technical, networking, promotional and mentoring support to further their careers in conservation.
  • Promote Leadership Skills and a Community Service Ethos through the nurturing and application of individual empathy, passions and talents in all youth members.
  • Provide or facilitate Exciting Educational Wildlife Experiences to achievers in fund-raising to reinforce and reward accomplishments.
  • Provide excellent campaign guidance through assisting volunteer Local A-Team Leaders, and providing needed documentation.
  • Shepard donated funds to existing, proven non-profit programs for preserving endangered species, as vetted by our Donation Review Committee.

We are Unique

A-Team for Wildlife combines some uncommon elements to “synergize” into a powerhouse for conservation. 

  • Excellence is in our name. “A-Team” means number one; a special, elite group of people working together.  It inspires our young members to do their best, and to have pride in their membership.
  • No other wildlife conservation-only organization in the U.S. has followed the youth-activist model for fund-raising successfully demonstrated by the likes of Free The Children.  A-Team for Wildlife does. 
  • No other conservation organization has created a formal program to identify, honor and provide on-going support for prodigies of conservation, as we do with our “International A-Team”. 
  • Most conservation organizations compete with other conservation organizations for donor dollars.  A-Team seeks to generate new dollars in new ways and pass on donations to deserving conservation efforts engaged in by others. 
  • Most conservation organizations offer public education as secondary to their field work, and many often neglect it.  A-Team focuses exclusively on education, reaching out into communities with our dynamic presentations, leaving the wildlife field work to those already so engaged. 
  • A-Team uses the behavioral fact that rewards reinforce behavior, by incorporating Exciting Educational Wildlife Experiences for our youth members.
  • We are designed for exponential growth.  Our programs can be upscaled because they designed to be reproducible. Each Presenter will routinely train additional Presenters to multiply and spread our impact, state by state. A centralized manager will oversee quality control.
  • Only A-Team for Wildlife has TARZAN as our spokesman.  DeWet Du Toit is an online media star as “The Real Tarzan of Africa” bringing an element of fun with a message of integrity, healthful living, and protection of wildlife.

Who we are

The founder and Board of Directors are parents, educators, and conservationists. Our Advisory Council is made up of professional conservationists and journalists outstanding in their fields of expertise. 

Our founder, CEO, and creator of the A-Team model is Ken Jones.  Mr. Jones has years of experience working in schools and youth groups providing nearly 1,000 conservation presentations while managing the Tropical Rainforest Museum and Rainforest Expo.  He also received awards and honors while volunteering for Earth Day efforts and San Jose City environmental events. More recently, Jones’s recognition includes  “One of the Next 100 extraordinary people who will change the world...” by One Billion Minds, in 2014, the “Environmental Excellence Award” from the National Association of Environmental Professionals, and a Commendation from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, both in 2015.  His environmental education career is extensively documented online. Mr. Jones expertise includes New Media, having produced an online TV series and several podcasts.  He currently produces and hosts the conservation podcast, Jungle Deep.

Included on our Board of Directors are members each credentialed and experienced in their positions on the board. Thea Powell,  has a BSc degree in Zoology/Ecology, Master’s degree in Evolution and Conservation, serves as our Secretary. Tristan Jones, Bachelors degree in Political Science, serves as our Treasurer. Sonia Miller, Director of Presentations, has years experience performing school presentations in conservation.  Robin Maxwell, director, is a best-selling author of historic novels.  DeWet Du Toit, our African Ambassador, is an actor/filmmaker, and professional TARZAN impersonator. Kerryn Vaughan, director, is an author, youth and wildlife advocate. Matt Tebb, Director of Wildlife, has as BS degree in Zoology.

Our Advisory Council was founded with nine conservation professionals, among them 4 PhDs in zoology and environmental sciences.  Some have publishing and/or photo-journalist credentials and the arts.

The Ask

We are seeking $20,000 in startup capital.  This will fund equipment, supplies, insurance, transportation costs, etc. for providing the initial round of membership fulfillment and school presentations for the first 12 months, in the state of California, until revenue generation kicks in from assembly fees and membership purchases. 

See our video:

Introductory/Grant Proposal Video:  http://youtu.be/2psd-ZRjBDA

Read our planning document: Confidential - request a copy from our office.

School Assembly Presentation Upgrade:

$40,000 is required to produce the props and purchase the technology for our outstanding “Saving Endangered Species” stage presentation, to be provided to schools as originally envisioned and described in our “Summary” document and video (above) .

$50,000 is sought to replace our initial documentary video with a custom film that is professionally produced in High Definition, contains animated segments, and is choreographed with the animatronic portions of our stage presentation.

$10,000 is needed for marketing to relaunch the assembly to schools and public venues.

Together these amounts equal $120,000 required to fulfill our offering to youth as designed, and put our programs into full swing.  A descriptive eight-page pdf of the “Saving Endangered Species Presentation Program Summary” which details the elements of the presentation is available in pdf format upon request.

Will you help us toward this goal?

Contact: Ken Jones, CEO, Ken@A-TeamFor Wildlife.org, 209-225-9660

www.A-TeamForWildlife.org

(January 2016)

 

1, 3 California State Superintendent of Public Instruction, 2015, “A Blueprint for Environmental Literacy”,   http://www.cde.ca.gov/pd/ca/sc/documents/environliteracyblueprint.pdf

2 -NEEAC’s 2015 Report to the U.S. EPA Administrator

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download a pdf copy: Case Statement.2016



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