Now 84, nothing is slowing her down — Goodall still travels the world to spread the word on conservation, her various journeys and scientific discoveries, and to encourage a whole new generation to reconsider their relationships with the environment.
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She is outright fascinating, a natural-born storyteller and a lover of Canada. The Jane Goodall Institute of Canada, a small, relatively unknown organization founded in 1977, continues Goodall’s pioneering research on chimpanzee behaviour and helps inspire young Canadians to learn about the world of nature. The institute’s program Roots & Shoots specifically focuses on youth.
“On one hand, it’s fantastic to work with the organization that bears her name,” said the institute’s CEO Andria Teather. “On the other, it comes with some challenges to shift the work towards supporting her legacy. We want to make sure people know we’re here, and know what we’re doing. Jane wants that, too.”
For the 11 employees of the institute, watching Jane was revelatory (as are the glowing reviews).
“For our staff, we grind it out every day. Her name is at the top of the masthead, you kind of forget and take for granted who she is,” said Teather. “To see the audiences, to hear the questions at the Q&As … for us, it’s old hat, but it brought it back to the staff and board of directors who she is, and the power of that person.”
“We weren’t expecting it to be so personal. On tour and in talks, she doesn’t delve into her personal feelings,” she continued. “In that film, she’s very frank about some of her life decisions. The interweaving of the chimp story and her personal story is really, really great.”
Global News sat down with Goodall in Toronto on the heels of her Earth Day talk at the University of Toronto. She’ll be speaking in Kitchener-Waterloo, Ont., at Centre in the Square on April 25. (As of this writing, the show is completely sold out.)
(You can watch the interview in the video, top.)Follow @CJancelewicz
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