Willa Julius is one of 40 students selected from around the province to participate in a Get Outside B.C. environmental project.
The three-part program begins with an orientation conference in Squamish the first week of July.
The second part of the project for participants is to host an environmental awareness event in the student’s home community sometime over the summer.
“My idea is to host a nature walk,” Willa says. She is thinking about holding the walk at Scout Island or at the Lac La Hache park because she has enjoyed walking among the large cedar trees there.
In the third part of the project she says all of the participants and their mentors come together again to discuss their projects.
“The people who participate in the program are passionate about the environment,” Willa says.
“I may also try to start an environmental awareness club,” Willa says. “It is a growing problem how our planet is being treated. We need to bring awareness to the environmental problems. We only have one Earth and we need to take care of it and start cleaning up the problems left by past generations.
“The impact of the industrial revolution was huge. It did bring progress but it also cost a lot for our planet.
She says she found out about the program in a brochure which her father brought home and decided to apply.
As part of the application process Willa says students were required to submit a creative essay or entry showing their passion for the environment.
Julius, who plays trumpet, trombone and tuba in the high school jazz and tour bands decided to create a song as part of her application.
She used the Garage Band program to compose the song which included tracks with her playing the trumpet.
“I called my song Deluge, a really nice word for rain,” Willa says.
Our rainy spring, flooding around North America coupled with fires last summer in the Cariboo Chilcotin, got her thinking about the importance of rain.
“Rain is important because it breathes life into the world and can also stop fire,” Willa says.
Willa lives with her parents, Dave and Carrie Julius, and little sister Lynne, 9, who Willa says is a big inspiration for her.
“She is a huge part of my inspiration. She is so sweet and her attitude is always positive. She is a diligent young girl and just a great kid.”
Willa says she developed a love for the outdoors hiking and biking and swimming in lakes around the region with her family. In elementary school she also participated in educational visits to Scout Island Nature Centre.
While she says her family has always planted a small vegetables garden, she started planting her own garden plot last year.
Last fall Willa also participated in a three-day B.C. Leadership Conference in Prince George with the theme Generation YES — Youth Exploring Solutions.
She says the next Generation YES conference will be held in Williams Lake and she has also applied to be a spirit leader at that conference.
“Kids around B.C. will come to Williams Lake for the conference. It’s really cool to see people from all around the province come together in one place and it is always nice to meet new people.
Willa says her favorite subject is social studies and she is looking forward to taking the comparative civilizations course next year. “I’m really big on learning about history and past civilizations.
After high school she plans to attend TRU in Williams Lake for two years then transfer to the University of Victoria to finish earning a degree in archeology.