2013 International Junior Ranger Camp

Preparing for International Junior Ranger Camp 2013, Bavarian Forest National Park (DE) © Mario Schmid

13th to 20th July 2013, Bavarian Forest National Park (D)

Let’s make a circle…

For the 40th anniversary of the EUROPARC Federation, we decided to bring the International Junior Ranger Camp back to its origins, to where it all started in the Bavarian Forest National Park.

For a whole week we had the chance to discover the park and learn about protected areas in Europe and how they work. At this biggest camp that EUROPARC ever hosted, with support from the National Park Administration, 50 enthusiastic participants from 11 different countries and 15 protected areas contributed to the fun and success of the camp.

In 2013 we had a closer look at different kinds of protected areas in Europe and what their tasks and responsibilities are. Mr Leibl, Director of the National Park Bavarian Forest asked the Junior Rangers for their help to manage some areas of the park during the week. From rangering to visitor management, from nature conservation to communication; the participants, Junior Rangers and their mentor Rangers could experience in hands-on activities what it takes to manage a park. Bog restoration, path building, learning about the daily tasks of a ranger and looking into different ways of communicating messages of protected areas to “the outside world” were on the agenda.

The Wildnis Camp in the Bavarian Forest, where we stayed for the week, was the perfect location for such an event. We had the camp to ourselves, were located in the middle of nature with plenty of space for games and activities, and the best of all: we got to sleep in different thematic huts, like the light star or the tree house. Very exciting. The evenings where full of games and other fun activities, like stargazing and seeing planet Saturn or a pub-quiz about the topic of nature conservation and the protected areas of the participants.

Unfortunately, as always, time flew and before we even realized, we had to say good bye to our new friends from all over Europe. But: that doesn’t mean that we can’t see each other again…

See some of the pictures on our facebook page.