By Isla King

I joined the Wildlife Trusts’ Our Bright Future team just last month, and those first few weeks have already flown by. It’s been a strange experience starting a new job while we’re all still working from home, but that’s done nothing to diminish my excitement at being part of such an inspiring programme.
Prior to taking on this new role, I spent the last three years working for the Woodland Trust. Initially in project management, I subsequently moved to the Trust’s campaigns team, where I was focused on protecting ancient woodlands from damaging developments. The scale of threats facing ancient woodlands all around the country was (and continues to be) intimidating, but it was tremendously rewarding when our efforts saved irreplaceable habitats from damage and destruction.
My experience of working on campaigns and communicating with the public confirmed for me not only how important the environment is for all of us, but also how much every individual can make a difference. This is something which is so apparent in all the fantastically varied Our Bright Future projects around the country, as well as in the programme’s advocacy work around the Three Asks.
It’s a challenging time for many projects, having to adapt to social distancing and find ways to engage remotely. However, I think the recent lockdown and the knock-on effects being felt by people and organisations alike have proven just how essential Our Bright Future is. I’m sure many of us have a new-found appreciation of spending time in nature, and how much this contributes to our well-being. At the same time, the importance of access to skills and experience if we are to make a green recovery, and the need for young people to be at the centre of this, is evident.
Despite it being early days for me in this role, I’ve already been so impressed by the many young people playing such vital roles in their projects and the wider Our Bright Future programme. I’m looking forward to meeting and working with people from across the programme in due course!