Hazel Richards, POC crew member, reflects on her visit to St Andrews Primary School, Congresbury on 29th Nov 2016:
Having sailed 1,900 nautical miles from Bristol to Vardo, an island surrounded by the Barents Sea in the High Arctic and near the Russian boarder, I returned a richer adventurer with unique experiences and a concern for climate change. When asked by Wicked Weather Watch if I would help to bring to life the wonders of the Polar Ocean challenge I jumped at the chance to inspire young people.
More than 70 children across years 1 and 2 at St Andrews listened intently and I was hugely impressed with questions ranging from polar bears, the reduction in sea ice, sea life and the effects of climate change on habitats. They loved trying on the Arctic clothes and boots and learning about the equipment used to save space, weight and time.
Before leaving, I reminded them of past explorers and how important it was for them to work as a team and support each other. As I walked through the school corridor, one of the pupils asked me to remember his name as he was planning to be an explorer himself one day. I smiled knowing I had inspired them all to learn how they can play their part and ensure sea ice and polar bears continue to survive the harsh world of climate change.