22 Nov 2010

Bee Guardian Foundation: become one now!

The Global Bee Project recently changed it's name to the Bee Guardian Foundation. Their recent newsletter explains why but for those folks who are not members I've added it below - see their website (where you can join) here: www.beeguardianfoundation.org/

Pics: Bee drawing, bee houses made by Woodcraft Folk, bee dancing at Woodcraft Folk, bee houses, bee bottle lid, Russ cartoon and Cleo Mussi mosaic artist bee and bee poem.

As I've noted before this Stroud-based project is just growing and growing - I've posted many times before on this blog about their plans, workshops and success locally from Stroud becoming the first Bee Guardian Town to our project to make 350 beehouses (see here and here - plus make your own here).

Well now comes the chance to make Gloucester City the first Bee Guardian City. The project – Bee Inspired: Gloucester Bee Guardians has been shortlisted by ITV’s Peoples Millions and they are votes away from winning a grant of £50,000 to transform Gloucester into the very first Bee Guardian City.

Tomorrow on the 23rd November a short film about Bee Inspired: Gloucester Bee Guardians and another project will be shown after the ITV 6pm News, the audience will be invited to vote for their favourite project. The project with the most votes will receive a £50,000 grant. More details to come.....People Millions Project Web Page

OK so here's the bit about why they changed their name...

We have changed name

We have recently changed the name of the organisation from the Global Bee Project to the Bee Guardian Foundation. Our reason for doing so is because we understand that the focus of the organisation is about inspiring people to actively protect and conserve all bee species as Bee Guardians.

The Global Bee Project will still exist within the organisation as a network of Bee Guardians around the world. The aim is that, in the future, the Bee Guardian Foundation will be able to fund and set up Bee Guardian Projects around the world, supporting and encouraging bee diversity - this is the Global Bee Project.

Who are BEE GUARDIANS and why do we need them?

BGF has created a new figure in the world – the Bee Guardian

The study of bees is split into two areas:
Apiology, the study of honeybees, whose public representatives are the beekeepers, and
Melittology, the study of all the other 20,000 bee species, for whom there is no public representative observing and looking after them.

As we have seen over the last few years, beekeepers who know their honeybees intimately, have been able to observe subtle as well as dramatic changes in the health of their honeybees. In certain countries they have successfully campaigned to ban paricular agricultural practices that have cause direct harm. Our question is, who is paying attention and looking out for the other bees, the wild bees, the bees that cannot be moved or prevented from flying at times when they may be harmed? Who is able to ring alarm when these other bees are declining in number and even disappearing? Our answer is the Bee Guardian! The bees needs a huge swarm of Bee Guardians to observe and look out for them, to protect their habitats and to provide them with more forage and nesting resources.

There are only so many bee scientists in the world, we all need to get involved, observe and speak up to protect these other bees.

For this reason, because there was no public figure observing these other equally important bee species, we decided to create a global project to launch the Bee Guardian figure. By creating a network of Bee Guardians around the world we hope to educate, inspire and enable everyone to start observing and protecting bee diversity. We want people to be proud of being Bee Guardians and the wonderful thing is that anyone can be one; you do not need to be a scientist, you do not need specialist equipment and expensive tools.

All you need is an interest and desire to understand and observe these fascinating and important creatures. Just by building a simple bee house you provide a safe a secure nesting site for certain bee species to return to year after year.

We are working on building a system so that anyone can become a Bee Guardian - individuals, groups, schools, businesses, towns and cities. (At the moment we are beginning to pilot the first Bee Guardian projects.)

Bee Guardians of all sizes can make a real contribution by paying attention to the bee species that live on the land that they manage. The activities of Bee Guardians not only improves the situation for bees but for all biodiversity.

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