Youth in Nature Summit

Are you a young person working, or hoping to work, in the environment sector? Or a conservation leader? Join us at the 2024 Youth in Nature Summit.

The 2024 youth-led Summit is organised as a collaboration between BTO’s Youth Advisory Panel, RSPB’s Youth Council, and WWF-UK’s Youth Ambassadors.

In the spirit of the 2022 Summit which focused on bringing together organisations, young people from all three groups are working together to organise a fantastic two-day event to inspire, empower and unite young people and leaders from across the environmental sector.

Tickets available now!

If you are aged 25 or under, in full-time education or unemployed, tickets are free and you may also apply for a travel bursary. More information about ticket pricing and travel bursaries >

Event information

When? Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 February 2024

Where? The David Attenborough Building in Cambridge

Who? Young people, leaders and decision-makers in the conservation sector

Tickets are free for those aged 25 and under, in full-time education or unemployed

Find out more

For young people

Join us on Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 February.

Our talks, workshops and sessions will empower you with the skills you need to have your voice heard in the conservation sector, and help you see how and where you can start making a difference today – in career paths as diverse as practical conservation, creative arts, science communications, fundraising, equity and human rights, and policy.

Note that the contents of the Summit are aimed at ages 14+, but it is open to anyone!

For conservation leaders and decision-makers

Join us on Saturday 17 February.

Our day of talks and workshops focuses on bringing together those who are currently making the decisions in conservation, with those who will do so in the future. How do we empower young people, take up space, and work together?

Talks and workshops on Sunday 18 February focus on empowering young people but you are more than welcome to join us! 

Book now on Eventbrite


  • Dos and don’ts of youth empowerment (for decision-makers)
  • How to influence people and get your voice heard (for young people)
  • Finding your voice: an introduction to public speaking (for young people)
  • How to run successful campaigns: using your voice for good (for young people)

Workshops and group sessions

  • How we can come together to benefit organisations, decision-makers and young people (for young people and decision-makers)
  • Developing practical skills (for young people and decision-makers)
  • Citizen science fair: how can you get started in conservation?  (for young people)
  • Finding a career in conservation: where will you go? (for young people)

Speakers, session leaders and panellists 

Our exciting line-up of speakers will be giving talks and leading discussions and workshops over both days of the Summit.

Emma Dakin – Youth Engagement Officer at Butterfly Conservation

From the humble woodlouse to the magnificent quetzals of Costa Rica, I have always had a passion for nature. My other passion is people! Specifically young people.

Through my previous work as a secondary school science teacher, and across various nature charities in their education teams I have seen first-hand the incredible impact young people can have within the conservation sector. I have also heard many frustrated voices about the lack of relevant opportunities and representation.

My role with Butterfly Conservation is to marry my two passions and connect young people with nature and connect nature with young people. I can’t think of a better pairing!

Richard Benwell – CEO at Wildlife & Countryside Link

Richard Benwell is chief executive of Wildlife & Countryside Link, a coalition of 81 nature charities. He is also Chair of Oxfordshire Local Nature Partnership and a board member of the Broadway Initiative and UK Youth for Nature.

Previously, he was Policy Advisor to the Secretary of State at DEFRA, and has worked for RSPB, WWT, the Home Affairs Select Committee and the Energy and Climate Change Select Committee, as well as being a board member for Westmill Solar Cooperative.

Ramandeep Nijjar – Key organiser for UK Youth 4 Nature

Ramandeep is a Zoology student in her second year at the University of Reading. She is co-president of the University’s Hedgehog Society which she co-founded in March 2023. She is also diversity officer for the Hiking Society. She is passionate about representing student views so she is a senior representative for her school, senator, and student councillor.

Outside of her university roles, Ramandeep wants to continue to channel her energy into making a positive difference for nature and wildlife, which she is able to do by being a part of the incredible BTO Youth and UK Youth 4 Nature teams.

Jack Abrey – Head of Youth Engagement at WWF-UK

Jack is currently the Head of Youth Engagement at WWF-UK, working to supercharge the organisation’s work with and for young people. Before this, he was a Programme Delivery Executive at the Scouts, where he led the global environmental campaign ‘Promise to the Planet’ which resulted in over 100 million hours of environmental social action taking place worldwide.

Throughout his career he has supported young people to take action and use their voice, to help build a better world, for everyone and everything in it.

Outside of work, Jack is a radio presenter on Tring Radio, an audiobook narrator for blind and visually impaired young people and loves a good cup of tea!

Cel Spellman – Actor, broadcaster and WWF Ambassador

Cel is an experienced actor, broadcaster & radio DJ and from Manchester. His most recent acting credits include starring in Netflix’s White Lines (which was no. 1 in 30 countries), ITV’s Cold Feet and BBC One’s World on Fire & Better.

His broadcasting credits began with regular hosting slots with CBBC on numerous shows, including BAFTA Winning Friday Download, and since CBBC he has been involved in BBC Three’s Young Doctors, Watchdog, The Voice and more.

Cel has also been a BBC Radio 1 DJ for over 5 years where he hosted the iconic Life Hacks on a Sunday afternoon. On top of this, Cel is currently the official host for the Man City fan show, We’re Not Really Here Yet, which goes out live on game days across Man City’s social channels that have millions of followers. 

Cel is a passionate advocate for the environment, working closely on numerous projects with WWF, including hosting the Call of the Wild podcast that launched in Feb 2021 with the first guest being none other than David Attenborough. Cel also worked closely with UNICEF, as a High Profile Ambassador, Young Peoples Trust for the Environment, as an ambassador, MISP, Great Ormond Street and is an Ambassador for The Wildlife Trust.

Juliet Vickery – Chief Executive of BTO

Following a PhD at Oxford, and research posts at the University of East Anglia and Scottish Natural Heritage, Juliet took up a lectureship post at the University of Edinburgh before moving to the NGO sector.

She has led research teams in two conservation NGOS, the British Trust for Ornithology and the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, and is now CEO of the British Trust for Ornithology. She holds an Honorary Research Fellowship in the Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge and an Honorary Professorship at the School of Biological Sciences at the University of East Anglia.

Juliet is a strong advocate of evidence in driving effective conservation and the need for the conservation community to genuinely foster a sense of belonging for everyone. 

Şeniz Mustafa – Key Organiser, UK Youth for Nature

Şeniz is an Ecology and Conservation Masters student who focuses her research on the foraging diet and behaviour of the white storks at Knepp Estate, with support from the Natural History Museum to identify any present beetle specimens.

As the location of her research suggests she is also passionate about rewilding, and as any ecologist is forbidden to have just one interest! She has a soft spot for insects and firmly believes moths and beetles are just as equally fascinating as their butterfly and bee counterparts!

Outside of university Şeniz volunteers with UK Youth For Nature on their access to nature campaigns, and hosts online interviews on their behalf to improve access to nature in her local area, and therefore writes a newsletter for environmental volunteering and events for Brighton and Hove.

Frequently asked questions

We hope you find the information you need below, but if not, you can contact our friendly team at youth [at]

Who can attend the Summit?

Can I attend if I am under 18? 

The event and its contents will be aimed at those aged 14+, but those under 14 are welcome to attend:

  • If you are aged 14–18, you can attend as long as we get consent from your parent(s)/carer(s), which we’ll ask for via email.
  • If you are under 14, your parent/carer will have to join you at the event and book a separate ticket.

My organisation wants to attend the Summit; how many people can I book for? 

We want to ensure that as many organisations and young people can join the Summit as possible, so we ask that organisations bring no more than 3–5 people.

What if I don’t know anyone else going, or I’m not part of an organisation? 

Our fantastic organising committee and volunteers will be on hand to make you feel welcome, even if you don’t know anyone yet! There’ll be lots of opportunities to meet other like-minded people. You don't need to know anyone or be part of an organisation to make the most of the Summit.

Do I need to have experience in conservation to come to the Summit? 

No, you don’t need any conservation experience to attend! There'll be lots of opportunities to learn about how you can get involved, especially on Sunday.

I’m early-career in the sector, so neither a ‘young person’ nor a ‘leader’ – should I attend? 

Yes, absolutely! It’ll be a great way to meet people in the sector, develop skills, network, and get an insight into the career options available.


We want to make the Summit accessible to as many people as possible. We hope the information below is useful but please get in touch at youth [at] and we will do our best to make the Summit accessible and welcoming for you.

  • The venue is fully wheelchair accessible with lifts throughout, and there are accessible toilets on each floor and an Evac Chair. 
  • We have gender-neutral toilets available on the first floor.
  • There will be access to quiet spaces and spaces for prayer. 
  • There is no dress code for the event.
  • You can tell us about any dietary requirements when you book your ticket.
  • You may be eligible for a free ticket and a travel bursary.
  • We’ll have a team of wonderful volunteers who are on hand to help you if you feel nervous, shy or need support.

Getting to the event

We'll send full instructions to ticket holders closer to the event, but if you can make it to Cambridge train station, you’ll only be a short walk or bus ride away!

To reduce the environmental impact of the Summit, we recommend travelling to the venue by public transport where possible.

Unfortunately, we will not be hosting the Summit as a hybrid event so there won’t be an opportunity to join the event online. We hope to be able to do this in future.

Financial support

How much does it cost to attend the Summit? 

If you are aged 25 and under, in full-time education or unemployed, you are eligible for a free ticket.

If you are not eligible for a free ticket, you can book a ticket and donate what you can. We recommend a donation of £75 per day to help us support young people being able to attend for free, but you can choose any amount from £1. 

Can you help me pay for my transport, or help me find and pay for my accommodation? 

If you are aged 25 and under, in full-time education or unemployed, you can apply for a travel bursary when you book to help you cover the cost of transport.

Unfortunately, we are not able to support attendees in finding or funding accommodation. There are hotels, hostels and AirBnBs in Cambridge, and Cambridge is a commutable distance from London, with regular train and bus connections.

Food and drink

We’re working with local caterers to deliver an exclusively vegetarian and vegan menu to reduce our environmental impact as much as possible. We'll serve refreshments and snacks in the morning and afternoon, and lunch which consists of sandwiches and wraps.

You can tell us about any dietary requirements when you book your ticket.

What is the dress code for the event? 

There is no dress code for the event, but we recommend wearing layers. The weather can be unpredictable and you will move between rooms where the temperatures may fluctuate slightly.

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