Just over 6 years ago, I’d just chucked in a pretty successful advertising career to do something that meant the world to me.
I found a job online for a conservation project called 21st Century Tiger, based at ZSL. The project was an intermediary for zoos and the public to donate to wild tiger conservation projects. Initially, the job was just to manage the social media pages. I launched a campaign #CrissieAndTheTigers and a mini-website before my interview with a goal to get 1000 new followers to their Facebook and Twitter audience. I smashed my target pretty soon in, and sent off my CV & cover letter breaking down the campaign.
Obviously was chuffed to end up with what was my dream job. Over the years, our brand grew and I started doing bits of work for another ZSL Initiative called ALTA – adding Amur leopards to my list of animals to obsess about. Ultimately we ended up merging to create WildCats, and built a gorgeous brand I’m proud of. I’m actually really tearful to hand over. It seemed only fitting that the bit of my life that started as an ambitious blog post, should end with one!
I have learned so much since I’ve been here; some things like measuring eels I probably won’t need to use again. But, some things have become major changes in the way I live my life. I was probably not very understanding of things like palm oil and naïve that I didn’t over consume things like meat, clothing, and plastic. I didn’t quite make it to being a vegan, quitting air travel, etc…. but I made plenty of smaller behavioral changes I’m proud of regardless. In no particular order here is my sustainable life advice before I sign out for the last time:
ALWAYS check where your Sumatran coffee has come from… make sure its been grown ethically! (RAINFOREST ALLIANCE!)
Don’t boycott ALL the palm oil.
Get rid of straws, carry a water bottle & a coffee cup (even though it’s a pain!)
Zookeepers are some of the most passionate caring people I know. The zoos that we have worked with have raised £3.5 million for conservation projects but the value of the platform educational awareness is priceless. Please carry on supporting the wonderful zoos that do their bit for in-situ conservation.
Charity shops are awesome.
Recycling is COOL…
I think that’s probably all the wisdom I’ll be able to summon up today. It feels like the end of an era, and I hate saying bye (actually crying again now). I wish the lovely Esther Conway & Jo Cook all the love for being the most amazing team, friends and big cat savers and all-around awesome human beings.
YOU ARE THE BEST