Empowering Youth to Change the World for Animals
Change for animals is happening fast and it is the children who create a future for the planet.
In collaboration with teachers, schools, and families, we have developed education resources and nature-based activities in which children can participate to create a world where all animal live in dignity and freedom.
Many resources and activities for youth can be found in existing Kerulos programs, including The Billy and Kani Fund, Sacred Bones, and Being Sanctuary. In addition, The Kerulos Center facilitates Allarekin! Nature Events in public schools, including The Kindest Show on Earth, Walk Like the Animals Walk-a-thon, National Bird Day Celebration, and Pirates of the Carrot Bean Banquet. Our educational materials and videos are translated by our wonderful Spanish, Chinese, and Swahili professionals.
Allarekin! Initiatives for Youth
The Kindest Show on Earth
The circus is a centuries-old custom enjoyed by families around the world. But today it is recognized that the animals used in circuses – Elephants, Lions. Tigers, and others- suffer terribly. In conjunction with Long Island’s Centre Avenue School (grades 1-6) in New York, The Kerulos Center created and produced an alternative family event that celebrates what the children called, The Kindest Show on Earth.
For four years, we have worked with the school to put on this children’s talent show where each student has an opportunity to dance, sing, juggle, play an instrument, and engage in other fun things for their parents and community.
Kerulos provides educational materials related to wildlife and nature. Funds raised provide support for the children to attend a summer environmental education camp. The Kindest Show on Earth has been wildly popular and soon will be extended to neighboring middle and high schools. In the not-too-distant future, The Kerulos Center will be bringing this beautiful event to our local Southern Oregon.
Walk Like the Animals Walk–a–Thon
Children at East Rockaway Centre Avenue School and Kerulos faculty stepped into the shoes of the Animals by holding a Walk Like the Animals Walk-a-thon. Over 400 students and teachers dressed like their favorite animal and “walk the walk” to make a change for all animals. They made banners and artwork and marked out a quarter-mile track on the playground and gathered together to walk the track using the information below to calculate the correct number of steps:
One-fourth mile is about…..
- 440 elephant steps
- 1584 wild turkey steps
- 633 grey wolf steps
- 288 moose steps
- 264 tiger steps
- 632 grizzly bear steps
- 262 lion steps
Funds raised by the children sponsored by their families, friends, and neighbors support the Billy & Kani Fund to save African Elephants and the traditional communities with whom they live.
National Bird Day Celebration
Recent National Bird Day celebrations (2010, 2011) in East Rockaway have their roots in an education and action program developed in 2010 by Centre Avenue thrid grade students with their teacher Lorraine Donlon and The Kerulos Center. Their efforts inspired then-Mayor Ed Sieban to declare January 5th official Bird Day for the town of East Rockaway.
Through science readings and activities, the students learned about our avian kin and the plight of wild birds captured from their flocks and held in captivity.
They also read the compelling real life story of Lucky the Lorikeet recounted in the beautifully illustrated book created by the Avian Welfare Coalition with the Midwest Avian Adoption and Rescue Services (MAARS) sanctuary. The children stepped into the feet of a lorikeet by learning how to “eat like a lorikeet”, drinking apple juice with a toothbrush to emulate how a lorikeet’s beak eats bananas and nectar. After learning all about birds, the children created posters and bookmarks honoring parrots to
Pirates of the Carrot Bean Banquet
Saving the planet includes healthy living. We sponsored a raw food chef to teach children how to make tasty healthy food and snacks.
The children were taught about the nutritional value of the vegetables they prepared and tasted and how they could make these for their families too.
The Billy and Kani Fund
The Billy and Kani Fund is an arts and education project for children, families, and schools to learn about Elephants and help save this magnificent species from extinction. The Project is a partnership with The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, Nairobi Kenya, who have saved hundreds of orphaned African Elephants.
The Fund is inspired by the children’s book, The Elephant Letters: The Story of Billy and Kani. Through the exchange between two African Elephant cousins, Billy and Kani, children learn about the challenges and threats that Elephants face in captivity and now in the wild. The book is now translated into four languages – Swahili, Chinese, Korean, and Spanish. They will seed the Billy & Kani PenPal Club so that children around the world can learn about each other and work together to help Elephants and other wildlife.
In addition to a musical, we are developing education and activities for children, their families, and schools that raise awareness and funds to support Elephants and the tribal human communities with whom they live.
Our Sacred Bones program integrates learning about endangered wildlife and the tribal peoples with whom they live. Each Sacred Bones Journey – teaching about a specific species and an associated indigenous culture – is connected to a pathway, either virtual or actual travel.
For instance, our Sea Turtle Trail of Tears Journey begins in Oklahoma at the terminus of The Trail of Tears and re-traces the route along which the Five Civilized Tribes travelled, and completes at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center.
Children and their families learn about Sea Turtles, issues relating to their conservation, cultural history of the Creek, Choctaw, Cherokee, Seminole, and Chickasaw nations, and how to translate this learning into everyday action and living. We have developed a companion Sacred Bones 150 page Workbook for students and adults and are now creating a companion workbook for youth.
We have begun to extend this program to schools to create a sanctuary for both humans and wildlife. Through the creation and cultivation of Sanctuary at school, children learn principles of care, compassion, and respect for each other, themselves, and nature.