In this Whale Mail you will find out what happend at the ESRC Whale of a Time Festival. You will be able to listen to the ESRC festival podcast, read what the experts had to say and find links to their presentations in the Whale of a Time Community. You may view the Whale of a Time Festival Gallery, buy Whale of a Time Art and the Whale of a Time CD as well as take part in our festival survey.
The first Whale of a Time Festival took place on 3 - 4 November at Birkbeck, University of London. The festival was an inspiring and empowering way of getting involved in social and environmental issues through exclusive film screenings by award-winning environmental film-makers followed by informative discussions with leading environmental and social researchers, sustainable art exhibitions, music and the Whale of a Time Workshop in celebration of the Earth and the world’s oceans and rainforests.
Festival Organiser and Founder of Whale of a Time, Irene Schleining commented, "Thank you for joining us and sharing your passion for a new awareness of the Earth! Passion and experience was shared, tears were shed, solutions discussed, networks built and so much was learnt. Empowering speakers, moving presenters, inspiring films, art and music, a passionate team of volunteers and an engaged audience! We are the voice of the Earth! We are the voice of the oceans! We are the voice of the rainforests!"
Photo: Left, Irene Schleining, Founder Whale of a Time, right, Dr. Dan Laffoley, Marine Vice Chair, IUCN's World Commission
Photo: Taken by Saul Tracey
With approximately 600 visitors the Whale of a Time Festival was a huge success. There has never been a more urgent time to elevate our consciousness. Thanks to your presence our feeling of belonging to one Earth Community has been amplified and all voices have been heard. By celebrating our common roots in nature, we are able to nurture and strengthen our sacred bond with our all life providing Mother Earth.
Photo: left, Dr. Sudhir Chopra, LL.M., J.D., Ph.D., FRGS. Law Fellow, Cambridge Central Asia Forum, Cambridge, middle, Dr. Serge Wich, Professor at Liverpool John Moores University and Scientific Advisor to the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Programme (SOCP), right, Louise Kulbicki, the Legal Co-ordinator for Eradicating Ecocide, headed up by visionary Polly Higgins
Through this unique bond we are able to realise our committment for a sustainable and contientious relationship with the world's largest ecosystems, the oceans and rainforests. This special relationship connects us deeply with all Earth inhabitants as one Earth family.
All life is intrinsically connected. We share a common intelligence with indigenous communities, whales and their ocean societies, orangutans and their rainforest communities and everything that is alive. All life on Earth has inherent rights to life! The Earth is sacred!
Photo: Performance by Orangutan drummers, Der Kommissar Klub
Please click on the image to take part in our survey. We value your feedback!
Read what Whale of a Time Experts had to say!
"The Whale of a Time Festival was so uplifting and enriching! What dizzying and dazzling information; freely given by wonderful, passionate, compassionate people. What beautiful works of art framed the charming and engaged audience! I learnt so much. Hearing about the journeys of film makers and speakers was life changing. The Festival reconnected my love and gratitude to the great oceans for sustaining life on earth. I simply had a whale of a time!"
Presenter and Expert on Eco-homes and Urban Permaculture Gardens, 'Eco Queen - the Queen of Green', from BBC programme “No Waste Like Home”
“Amazing people, great fun and a wonderful sense of community and enthusiasm for the ocean are ways in which I can sum up my first encounter with Whale of a Time. It is that sense of passion for the ocean and enthusiasm to bring together experts, the pubic and art that will help save the blue heart of the planet. I look forward to my next encounter with a great group of people and hope that my presentation helped add a little inspiration and sense of hope to the proceedings."
Marine Vice Chair
IUCN’s World Commission on Protected Areas
"The festival or better a conference 'Whale of Time,' was a wonderful experience. It was well organised, well structured to cover all major aspects of wildlife issues as well as current environmental concerns. Allmost all the speakers had first hand knowledge in the areas of their expertise and were able to make effective presentation that could be easily understood by laymen as well as people with advance knowledge of the subject matter. It was a very effective exercise in wildlife and environmental advocacy. More events like this ought to be encouraged to increase awareness about contemporary environmental problems."
Prof. Sudhir Chopra, LL.M., J.D., Ph.D., FRGS. Law Fellow, Cambridge Central Asia Forum, Cambridge, UK
"The Whale of a Time Festival was truly a place to make some amazing connections - connections that were not only personally rewarding, but also those that really moved forward the vital agenda of ocean conservation. I really look forward to the next one!"
"Thank you to Whale of a Time and all for an inspiring event and celebration of Earth's gift of life and all her communities. Let's continue collaborating to live in harmony with the wider Earth Community."
Coordinator of Earth Jurisprudence Learning Centre and legal researcher
Gaia Foundation and Wild Law UK
“Being at the Whale of a Time festival was energizing because it brought together a stimulating set of speakers with an audience that is keen to do what they can for conservation to work. Such engagement between various stakeholders in conservation is essential for it to succeed. Conservation and sustainable management of the planet will only happen if all segments of society discuss these issues together and work towards solutions together. Events like the Whale of a Time are crucial steps in getting us there. I am grateful to have been invited to such a great festival.”
Scientific Advisor to the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Programme (SOCP)
Professor at Liverpool John Moores University
"The Whale of a Time Festival brought together a range of experts, passionate environmentalists and leaders in their field to create two days of inspiring ideas, innovations and solutions. It was a truly inspiring and fun event but with some very serious environmental problems brought home through some moving films. A big thanks to all the team for a great event, I thoroughly enjoyed it and look forward to the next!"
"A BIG THANK YOU FROM THE SMALLEST DOLPHIN AND NABU INTERNATIONAL to Irene and the Whale of a Time Team for hosting us at your spectacular event full of inspiration, creativity and knowledge. We wouldn't have wanted to miss it for the world! ><>"
Head of International Species Conservation
"I very much enjoyed the festival and found the audience very receptive and engaged with the material presented. The debate was vibrant and open."
Co-Designer of I-Terra
Senior fellow at the United Nations Environment Programme World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC)
Geographer, King’s College London
"A big thank you to all of you who made the Whale of a Time festival happen. The audience was amazingly engaged during the lectures and panel discussions and it was great to meet and talk with so many interesting participants. Well done!"
"I would like to thank you for the amazing opportunity that you gave us to join this Festival. It was a very inspiring day. Everybody, the presenters and the members of the audience, were there together to celebrate the oceans. Thank you again for organising this and for supporting our Be a Fisherman's Friend campaign"
"Travelled from Coventry to come here today. Well worth the journey. Really informative day. Will go away making every effert to make a difference and to promote the hard work of others." Laura
"I have never met anyone as passionate as these people (Whale of a Time) about the environment apart from Earthwatch team. You should join Earthwatch!" Nigel Winser, Executive Vice President, Earthwatch UK
We filmed the festival and talks will be available to watch online in the new year! We are in the process of editing the video and audio recordings of talks and discussion. Stay tuned with the Whale Mail!
If you have taken photos please feel free to email us. We are happy to credit you and add them to our festival gallery.
For further study on Green (the film by Patrick Rouxel) we recommend following online resource "Studying Green" - The study was a response to the film Green by various Social Science Researchers and includes a series of essays by Dr Sian Sullivan, Senior Lecturer in Environment & Development, Dept. of Geography at Birkbeck University, as well as Gill Branston, John Blewitt, Mike Goodman, Jamie Lorimer, James Igoe, Dan Brockington and the filmmaker of Green, Patrick Rouxel.
If you didn't get a chance to buy any Whale of a Time Art or the Whale of a Time CD at the festival, here is your chance to buy it now as long as there are any left. If you are interested please send us an email.
The purpose of the CD is to promote Whale of a Time Musicians and raise their profile through the Whale of a Time Festival and the Whale of a Time Community. The Whale of a Time Community is a creative platform for social and environmental inspirations and community evolution.
Whale of a Time Artists donate a percentage towards Whale of a Time. The donations help us to organise creative, educational and empowering community events such as the Whale of a Time Festival and the Whale of a Time Workshop to inspire a new awareness of the Earth.
Whale of a Time Festival Survey
If you joined us at the ESRC Whale of a Time Festival, we would most welcome your feeback. Please take a few minutes to complete our survey here.