OURF's Youth Ambassador- Jack Dalton

Hello, my name is Jack and I am a 10-year-old from New Hampshire in the United States. Like all 10-year-olds I enjoy biking, playing video games, card games, and board games, sports, and being with my friends. But I do an activity that is very unique to me and unlike most 10-year-olds. This activity is my conservation work. My ultimate goal is to get orangutans off the endangered species list.

This all got started on one particular day at the Memphis Zoo in Memphis, Tennessee. The baby orangutan, Rowan, was turning three and the zookeepers had a “birthday party” for him. It was here that I first learned how palm oil and deforestation were affecting orangutans. Looking into Rowan’s thoughtful eyes made me fall in love with him and I knew I had to help orangutans somehow. I have always had a deep love for animals, but seeing Rowan and learning about deforestation really drew out my passion for conserving animals and our world.

Rowan birthday party

Creating powerpoints, making videos, writing books, testing conservation video games, and going in and teaching local classes about orangutans and palm oil is how I like to spend my time. When I was nine I was named the Youth Ambassador for Orangutan Alliance, an international non-profit that works to protect endangered species and the rainforest. For my conservation work, I have received various awards such as being a Top 20 Finalist for the first-ever TIME Kid Of The Year, and I received a Judge's Favorite Award from Orang Utan Republik’s international video contest.

Jack Lectures

One of my favorite things to do is inspire people, especially kids, to make changes in their lives. There is nothing like seeing a child's face light up during my presentations when they realize they too can help orangutans and other endangered species. Months after presenting I get emails from teachers saying their students wanted to write about orangutans and palm oil during their writing units. It is when I receive emails like this that I know I am making a difference and helping these incredible apes.

Orangutans are in need of our help, and I will not stop doing everything I can to protect them until my goal of getting them off the endangered species list is reached. As ambitious as this may sound, I truly believe that together we can change the fate of the critically endangered orangutan. If you want to learn more about these amazing creatures and how you can help them, you can check out Kid Conservationist on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube! I will continue to post updates on social media, but if you have any thoughts or feedback on my work (or any questions) please feel free to private message me or send me an email at kidconservationist@gmail.com. Thank you!