Beth Shockley, Public Affairs, 302-739-9902
Public invited to attend kickoff event for Children in Nature Initiative with the goal of Leaving No Child Inside
Dover event to feature “Last Child in the Woods” author Richard Louv,
and the presentation of a plan to get Delaware children outdoors
DOVER (Sept. 26, 2012) – The public is invited to attend a kickoff event at which a new report that provides recommendations to connect Delaware’s children with the outdoors will be presented. The event will feature national author Richard Louv, who penned “Last Child in the Woods,” which has stimulated an international conversation about the relationship between children and nature.
The report, prepared under the leadership of Governor Jack Markell by the Children in Nature/No Child Left Inside Task Force, identifies the national trends contributing to growing childhood obesity, including lack of physical activity, poor nutrition, and limited outdoor experiences, all of which adversely impacts the health of children and academic achievement. Evidence now shows that children ages eight to 18 average 6.5 hours per day with electronic media and just minutes a day engaged in unstructured outdoor activities.
The event will be held on Monday, Oct. 1, from 7 – 8:30 p.m. at the Delaware Technical Community College, Terry Campus, in the Corporate Training Center.
Louv will be joined by members of the Task Force representing a vast range of expertise on the issue, including DNREC Secretary Collin O’Mara, and representatives from the Delaware Department of Education, Nemours Health and Prevention Services, the Delaware Nature Society, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Center for Inland Bays, the Department of Health and Social Services/Division of Public Health, Delaware Greenways and the Delaware Association for Environmental Education.
The Children in Nature/No Child Left Inside Task Force was formed at the direction of Governor Markell by Secretary O’Mara and former Secretary Lillian Lowery of the Delaware Department of Education. They charged the Task Force to be proactive in addressing the opportunities afforded by the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act and the current status of “nature-deficit disorder” facing the children of Delaware.
The mission of the Task Force was to formulate a plan to create opportunity for all Delaware children to participate in outdoor experiences, to improve environmental literacy, promote healthy lifestyles, and provide better access to green space through formal and informal outdoor experiences.
Richard Louv is a journalist and the author of eight books about the connections between community, family and nature. He received the 2009 Audubon Medal which has previously been awarded to Rachel Carson, E.O. Wilson and President Jimmy Carter. Louv is the chairman of the Children and Nature Network and honorary co-chair of the National Forum on Children and Nature. His articles have been published in the San Diego Union-Tribune, the New York Times, and the Washington Post, among others. He has also appeared on The Early Show, Good Morning America, Today, CBS Evening News and many other national programs. His book, Last Child in the Woods, has been translated into 10 languages and published in 15 countries
Vol. 42, No. 373