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The Take a Stand youth outreach program, founded by SFU Professor Emeritus Allison Kermode and her partners, the creators of STAND film, is hosted within the SFU Faculties of Environment and Science. The program is specifically geared towards helping school educators achieve environmentally-oriented, concept-based learning within a framework that aligns well with B.C.’s curriculum.

Appropriate for both elementary and secondary school students (Gr. 3-12), the Take a Stand program was developed to share and treasure the natural beauty of B.C. with our youth, including its urban-nature areas and unique coastal wilderness, home to rich First Nations cultures, diverse and productive oceans, and an expansive intact temperate rainforest.

As a learning tool, the team uses STAND film, an award-winning documentary film that uses surfing and stand up paddleboarding to showcase the ecological, cultural, and aesthetic value of the West Coast.

New Virtual Reality film resources surrounding wildlife and ecological themes within the Great Bear Rainforest and Sea form part of our new educational content.

Through school visits centred around STAND screenings, discussions with filmmakers, our contest, and interactive activities, we aim to foster environmental stewardship in youth across the province and empower students to become agents of effective social and environmental change in their communities.

Last but not least, thanks to the generous support of our sponsors, we are pleased to offer this program completely free of charge to participating schools!

The Take a Stand program comprises:

Program introduction and inspiration-to-action components highlighted by Director & SFU Professor Emeritus Allison Kermode, including the goals and scope of the Take a Stand program, youth contests and opportunities for youth.

Interactive presentation on the Great Bear Rainforest, film screening of STAND or other films, and Q&A hosted by expedition leader Norm Hann, and Stand filmmakers Nicolas Teichrob and Anthony Bonello.

Opportunities to host Community Action Programs at schools that include graduate student mentors and lightening talks by local conservation organizations to encourage youth to take action on environmental issues in their own communities.

Experiential learning opportunities connected to wild salmon and wild salmon habitat within urban areas.

A Student Innovation Contest sponsored by Take a Stand and the Raincoast Conservation Foundation that challenges students to come up with new ideas and action projects that lead change in their local communities. We are looking to showcase the innovative ideas and inspiring youth-led projects that promote education, stewardship and conservation of the local wildlife, habitats and Indigenous cultures of coastal British Columbia and the transboundary Pacific Northwest.

Youth mentoring in the development of action projects and public education campaigns to help save wild salmon (priority conservation concern).

The tools that we use to engage youth and teachers include:

Science and ecology-based talks on Great Bear Rainforest

Contests – project-based learning, science literacy, art/film

Workshops – community organizations and science mentors

Interactive activities and presentations on environmental science

Films – conventional and virtual reality (wildlife and ecology)

Experiential learning and science-based policy challenges

Teacher and youth resources (films, VR/AR resources, salmon kit)

Advanced science education opportunities for youth