Junior Conservation Crew

Summer Conservation-focused Program for Youth Ages 10-13

Make a real impact on wildlife this summer with Sunset Zoo and the Gregory P. St. Amand Memorial Fund. Thanks to the support of the Gregory P. St. Amand Memorial Fund, Sunset Zoo is launching the Junior Conservation Crew in 2021.  This new program will provide preteens and teens the opportunity to directly engage in conservation action through citizen science, removal of invasive species, research, and more.  

Participants will join their Crew at Sunset Zoo once per week for 4 hours.  Each session will incorporate a citizen science lesson and activity, a behavioral research component, and one of many rotating projects.  Rotating projects include removal of invasive plants around Sunset Zoo, the development of a conservation education project, participation in a local field study, and the chance to design and propose a new logo the Junior Conservation Crew.  All activities are designed for maximum conservation impact and to foster the passion for wildlife, nature and conservation in tomorrow's leaders.

Registration & Fees

Registration will open at 8:00 a.m. on Monday, March 29, and closes at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, May 9th.  Space is limited to 60 participants, and will be on a first come, first serve basis.  To register, click here.

Registration Fee: $100

Registration fee covers training and participation for 10 weeks throughout the summer. Please review the Junior Conservation Crew Policy before registering.

Scholarships:

Thanks to the generous support from the Gregory P. St. Amand Memorial, Sunset Zoo is able to offer 5 scholarships in 2021. Scholarship applications are due by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, May 3. For details and requests of applications, contact Nicole Wade by email or phone at 785-587-2737.  

Training

Training for the Junior Conservation Crew will consist of a series of online training components through Sunset Zoo's Google Classroom.  A link to the Google Classroom will be provided to all registrants by the end of the day on Monday, May 10th.  Participants will have until May 26th to complete the training.

Summer Schedule and Activities

Summer schedules will be assigned and provided to families by Monday, May 24th.  Availability forms will be emailed to families with the Google Classroom link on Monday, May 10th, and will be due back by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 14th. Availability forms received after May 14th may not receive priority placement.

Junior Conservation Crew starts on Tuesday, June 1st, and ends on Monday, August 9th.  Each participant will join their Crew for activities once, each week during this timeframe for a total of 10 sessions.  Sessions will take place from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. or from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.  Parents must pickup their youth participant within 15 minutes of program conclusion.

Below is a sample schedule for a session:

TimeActivity
8:00 a.m.Bug Safari Citizen Science Activity
9:05 a.m.Zoo Monitor Behavioral Research
10:05 a.m.Snack (provided)
10:30 a.m.Conservation Education Project Work
11:00 a.m.Box Turtle Survey
11:30 a.m.Litter Clean Up
11:45 a.m.Zooniverse Citizen Science

All activities are led by trained zoo education staff, and each session will start from the Zoo's ticket booth.  Sessions will be limited to 6 Crew members, and safety measure will be in place to reduce the risk of COVID-19.  Those measures include increased airflow in indoor spaces, enhanced cleaning measures, hand sanitizer stations, and all staff and participants will be required to wear face masks.