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Young minds and green conversations

Arannya Environment Research Organisation has recently started ‘Burgeon’, a series of e-talks where students can present their work in the field of natural history, wildlife and environment. NT KURIOCITY details

RAMANDEEP KAUR|NT KURIOCITY

Right through the lockdown, Arannya Environment Research Organisation (AERO), an NGO based in Goa, has continued to be active in doing their bit for the environment. They collaborated with several organisations like Kottayam Natural History Society and Thicket Tails to spread awareness about biodiversity of Goa.  Resource person from Arannya, Pronoy Baidya, also spoke at several institutional platforms.

And now, the two-year-old NGO, which conducts a lot of environment education-based activities in the state like camps, nature walks, talks, training programs, etc, has started with ‘Burgeon’, a series of e-talks where young students can present their work in the field of natural history, wildlife and environment based field studies.

“No matter how small their work may be it is this small step that could become a leap for their professional career and who knows even for science,” says Harshada Gauns, from Arannya Environment Research Organisation. “Each talk will also feature subject experts who would then give comments and feedback to the presenter hopefully acting as a booster for the student to continue with their amazing work.”

Arannya has a network group of around 150 youngsters spread across Goa and as of now they have selected 10 students from around the state, who are passionate about this field and have been doing tremendous work.

The term ‘burgeon’, says Gauns refers to something that grows really fast. “And we at Arannya felt that our younger generation are like flower buds who if given proper nourishment will flourish into beautiful flowers. Hence, we named our initiative as ‘Burgeon’,” she adds.

The first session of ‘Burgeon’ was held on July 1 where student of Ganpat Parsekar College of Education, Arambol, Tejashri Mahale, spoke about ‘Birds in my backyard’. She was joined by senior scientist from Nature Conservation Foundation, Bengaluru, Suhel Quader and board member of Goa Bird Conservation Network, Mandar Bhagat. The talk was seen live by 637 viewers.

Third-year student, Mahale from Pernem chose to specialise in zoology because she had a keen interest in all kind of animals. However, she never really tried to question why animals behaved in a particular way and had such beautiful colours until she read and learned about them. She says: “When I was in second year we went for a field trip to Carambolim lake wherein Gauns was the resource person and she explained interesting facts about birds which fascinated me and developed my interest in bird-watching.” Since then, she began bird-watching in her backyard, doing rough sketches of the birds, their flying patterns, and even listing down the birds that used to visit.

She describes her e-talk as a great experience as she says that being a student she got to interact with the experts. “I learned a lot from this talk and the experts even told me how I could do bird-watching in a better way.”

The next e-talk on July 8, will see another student of Ganpat Parsekar College of Education, Arambol, speaking on the ‘Fascinating journey with ants’.

(‘Burgeon’ sessions will be held every Wednesday at 5 p.m. on the Arannya Environment Research Organisation FB page)

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