Free Youth Action Days encourage young people in Sussex to make a difference to the environment

Student Kirsty Ferris is a volunteer ranger for South Downs National Park
Student Kirsty Ferris is a volunteer ranger for South Downs National Park

Young people are invited to join the fight against plastic pollution, help with reptile conservation and protect vital pollinators through a series of free Youth Action Days organised by the South Downs National Park Authority.

A number of events are planned throughout August, as part of the 2019 Year of Green Action, and they are open to anyone aged 16 to 25. Venues include Truleigh Hill, north of Shoreham, and Kithurst Hill, north of Angmering.

Student Kirsty Ferris, 20, from Littlehampton is already a youth ambassador and volunteer ranger for the National Park, and she is keen to encourage more young people to be involved.

She said: “School and college is out for the summer and this is an incredible chance for young people to learn more about the environment, while having fun, of course.

“Climate change, biodiversity and plastic pollution are very much in young people’s mindsets and I know a lot of my friends want to know more. These Youth Action Days are the perfect way to learn about the issues and see how you make a difference.

“The beauty of these Youth Action Days is that they are all free and you don’t need any experience, just a keenness to learn about the natural world.

“They will also be held in some stunning locations in the National Park, so they’ll be plenty of opportunities to take some great pictures for social media.”

Wednesday, August 14, is microvolunteering action day at Truleigh Hill, from 11am to 3pm.

Jeff Travis, media and public relations officer, said: “We need help promoting the voices of young people in the South Downs and we want you to help us.

“There will be several activities and sessions learning about how to use social media effectively, getting the most out of your camera phone and more.

“We also want to create a multimedia piece using your content to publish on our Instagram, Twitter, Facebook pages and our website.”

Thursday, August 22, is precious pollinators action day at Kithurst Hill, from 9.30am to 1.30pm.

Jeff said: “This is your chance to help protect our precious pollinators like butterflies and bees and to learn more about their habitats.

“National Park rangers will be guiding you on how to identify butterflies and how to submit sightings on a smartphone, as well as guiding you around the South Downs to learn about the history and wildlife found there.”

For full details, visit www.southdowns.gov.uk/make-difference-summer-join-youth-action-day