‘Build a Better World’ encourages kids to appreciate wildlife | RecordCourier.com

‘Build a Better World’ encourages kids to appreciate wildlife

Gabe Kerschner shows "Wizard", a Turkery Voucher to kids at the Wildlife show Wednesday.
Sarah Drinkwine |

More than two dozen children squealed and squirmed as Gabe Kerschner, an animal caregiver at Wild Things Inc. placed two cockroaches on nine-year-old Mason Bennett’s back during the Wildlife show at the CVIC Hall on Wednesday.

Kerschner explained how the tiniest creature to the largest, such as a 15 foot and 90 pound burmese python, need their help in thriving in their natural habitats.

The show was hosted by the Douglas County Library as part of their summer reading program “Build a Better World.”

The library Youth Services Librarian Kira Frederick said the reading program encourages children to continue reading during summer vacation while inspiring a greener, safer and a more thoughtful place for everyone.

“I hope through this show the children learned something new about the animals they saw and the importance of conservation as well as some tips if they were to run across any of these animals.” said Frederick.

Wild Things Inc. is a nonprofit rescue center in Weimar, Calif., with that same hope in mind.

Founded in 1987, Wild Things Inc. houses and cares for displaced or injured wildlife and educates the public of the importance of conservation and an appreciation for doing so, said Kerschner. According to the Wild Things Inc. website, the center currently provides homes for more than 60 species of wildlife.

“The theme of the summer reading program is to build a better world and I think that is really fitting for these animals,” said Kerschner. “They need a safe and clean environment to be successful in the wild and we want to keep it that way and you guys can help with that.”

Kerschner said people can help in three ways; pick up trash, recycle and use water wisely.

“It’s important for the animals and the environment,” said Bennett.

Kerschner hopes by sharing the animals at Wild Things Inc. and their stories, everyone will be more informed and leave the animals be.

“We hope to encourage a greater appreciation for the natural environment and better decision making that will benefit the earth and all that inhabit it,” he said.