Protecting the environment with intelligence

A campaign group unlike any other – volunteering at EIA

While others may be sitting in a drab set of office blocks looking out onto London with their idle computers occasionally utilised to check Facebook every now and again, I am lucky enough to be working with the EIA helping out with the day-to-day workload.

From oceans and forests to tigers, elephants and whales, EIA has proven highly effective in the world of conservation, unlike other fat cat charities worried about their next paychecks and not what they actually stand for. Its offices may not be the biggest or the fanciest, but it sure does stand for something great and the message it conveys is the cornerstone of its work, which a nice refresher from others.

Adult male tiger cooling down by Michael Vickers (www.tigersintheforest.co.uk)

So why EIA? A few years back, I was dragged along to a tiger forum by a friend of mine to report back for my group the World Conservation and Wildlife Trust (previously Respect Honour Nature) and, following the hour-and-a-half talk that followed, I found myself drawn to one charity in particular.

I remember that it was more like a secret MI5 for animals than a normal charity; secret filming and undercover work, and all for the sake of saving critically endangered species and, in a sense, the world. It covers all the bases with a low overhead to ensure the money from donations go where it’s meant to – the frontline work. What more can I say?

My group, the WCWT, was set up by three inspired British teens (myself being one of them) determined to raise awareness about how serious climate change is and to set up and fundraise for a variety of conservation projects.

The WCWT organises projects to raise awareness and to help combat climate change via reaching out to the younger generation. Recently, we have been working with EIA and Dakini Media to help save rainforests, tigers, coral reefs and biodiversity, so far having raised more than £27,000. In the Chinese Year of the Tiger, we were involved in a project which made a phenomenal £120,000 to help the plight of the tiger, alongside Dakini Media and EIA.

Now we are looking at oceanic conservation, having launched our Marine Conservation project last September, which will run through until November 2012 when we will launch our final film of two (our first film created around the UK coastline with professional underwater photographers) on the destruction of our seas and the beauty that lies underneath the waves.

Well, that’s me in a compressed nutshell – wouldn’t want to bore anyone, now would I? Also, I just want to add how great the people at the EIA truly are and how driven they are to actually make a difference. Hopefully one day everyone will be like that …
Robin Johnson
Chief Director, World Conservation and Wildlife Trust

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4 Responses

  1. Michelle Horton says:

    The kind of work you do is something I long to do for the rest of my life. I want a career filled with passion, excitement and education. Animals are my heart and soul and to save them and protect their environment is invaluable. I’m writing because I want to know how to get my foot in the door job wise. So many times it is very difficult to be noticed in big organizations for a career.

    • eia says:

      Hello Michelle

      Thanks for your interest.

      As a small organisation, EIA doesn’t have positions open up very often – those we do have are to be found on our vacancies pages at http://www.eia-international.org/about-eia/vacancies.

      Our investigators and other staff come from a wide variety of backgrounds, such as the sciences and journalism; all are united in their commitment to what they do and the expertise they bring with them.

      Some have started their relationship with EIA as volunteers, and we are always looking for people who can make a meaningful contribution to what we do. You can find details about how to get in touch with us to discuss volunteering at the address above.

  2. Mark Colombus - Herts wedding photographer says:

    The work you do is truly inspirational. I think once the kiddies have flown the nest me and the wife will be embarking on doing something with the EIA or a similar organization.

    • Hi Mark,

      I am doing an internship here at EIA, on whole for 10 weeks. Unfortunately, my last week has begun last Monday, so there are just three more days left for me.

      As I stayed here now for a couple of weeks I realised how much this help, you just mentioned, is much needed. Even though EIA is very successful, there are not many people working behind this name, which means they all always have to achieve real hard work. As a volunteer or an intern it sometimes happens that you have to do some boring stuff – I for example did a lot of Excel Data Work – but still, you never forget that also this tiny little thing you did is so important, not only for the organisation, but also for endangered animals, like elephants, tigers and cetaceans or for the rainforest.

      So, Mark, if you still are interested in volunteering for EIA, please just get in touch with them. EIA is truly a wonderful NGO with some magnificent people who will never stop fighting for their ideal imagination of our world – thankfully!

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