Do you know someone who is doing outstanding conservation work for a natural World Heritage site? Would you like to see this person recognised for their exemplary contribution? If so, get in touch!
Update: nominations are now closed
IUCN is calling for nominations of Heritage Heroes – people who single-handedly take action to help conserve natural World Heritage sites in the face of imminent threats.
Three to five Heritage Heroes will gain recognition through a social media campaign. One Hero will be invited to attend IUCN's World Conservation Congress in Hawai'i, with costs covered for flights, hotel and entrance fees!
The deadline for nominations is 7 February.
Who are Heritage Heroes?
Beyond conservation science, World Heritage is driven by human motivations such as pride, passion, and a sense of belonging. Around the four corners of the world, a few brave people relentlessly invest efforts to make a difference in the way natural World Heritage sites are conserved, sometimes under dangerous conditions.
The Heritage Heroes Award, to be launched at the IUCN World Conservation Congress 2016, aims to gather the stories of individuals who devotedly take action to protect a natural World Heritage site against imminent threats. This is both a celebration of the places and people that inspire us, and a wake-up call on the reality of threats on the ground.
Who is eligible to be nominated?
Eligibility is open to anyone associated with a site, such as staff, community representatives, or volunteers. Organizations are not eligible for recognition.
A shortlist will be selected, based on the following criteria:
1) Self-starter: Someone who has led to a major initiative, beyond their normal job
2) Ground level: The actions must be focused at ground-level change, related to one or more natural World Heritage sites and the communities in and around them
3) Results: The actions taken show clear results in tackling an immediate threat or major issue, which ideally is evidenced in the IUCN World Heritage Outlook
A selection panel made up of nature experts will review the nominations and select a short list. Three to five heroes will be chosen for coverage on social media. The aim is to give recognition to our Heritage Heroes while raising awareness of threats facing our planet's most precious natural areas.
Why should you care?
The objective of Heritage Heroes Award is to inspire people to value the importance of natural World Heritage sites and recognize the need to collectively invest in their conservation.
Despite their high visibility, today more and more of our planet's natural icons are facing major threats, including invasive species, poaching, logging and large infrastructure projects. Out of 229 World Heritage sites listed for their natural values, 18 are on the List of World Heritage in Danger and, according to the IUCN World Heritage Outlook, one third are facing serious issues.
Our planet is now at the crossroads. It is time to change the dynamics for natural World Heritage sites. If we cannot secure the highest level of protection for these exceptional places, we will have failed as a conservation community.
How can I nominate a Heritage Hero?
Simply fill in this form and send it heritageheroes [at] iucn [dot] org.