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President's Letter: Navigating a crisis with compassion

You are receiving this copy of our magazine in May of the year 2020, which the world will remember as an extraordinary time—a time when the connections between people everywhere became more conspicuous and critical than ever, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Our connections have become undeniable in terms of risks and how our behavior affects others, but even more profoundly in terms of the utter necessity of those connections in our everyday lives and in meeting the needs of our families and our communities. Our human family has rarely needed each other more.

And while we know that these are extraordinary times, we also know that the work of conservation must go on. So at WWF we are reimagining how we deliver against our mission in these unprecedented circumstances. We are operating virtually—connecting via computer screens and phone lines—across WWF’s far-flung, international network of offices. In the best way we can, we continue our work with governments and institutions and other important partners to safeguard landscapes and protected areas that are fundamental to the provision of food, water, livelihoods, and more, to some of the most fragile communities around the world. We are learning to navigate a new normal, and extending each other the kindness and flexibility we all need right now is paramount.

Carter Roberts headshot

Carter Roberts
President & CEO, WWF

“Our connections are each other more. I believe that stories of hope and possibilities can help sustain us as we all adjust and respond in this moment of need. ”

Carter Roberts
WWF

And we are devoted to staying in touch with you, providing tools for education and entertainment. We want to offer you resources to draw on in remembering the glory of this planet that sustains us; the sublime interconnections between people and nature; and the inspiring stories of individuals who have done great things for their communities and for the world. We need these stories, and these touchstones, more than ever. Please visit worldwildlife.org to learn more about WWF’s free resources.

You can also read some of these stories in the pages of this magazine. We believe that these stories of hope and possibilities can help sustain us as we all adjust and respond in this moment of need. We take strength from them, and we draw energy from continuing to pursue this work in the midst of the storm around us. We also draw energy from you, from your support, and from your trust in us at this pivotal time.

This is also a moment when we even more deeply realize the connections among people, nature, and human health. We know that diseases can jump species, from animals to human, as is the case for COVID-19 and other viral diseases such as SARS and Ebola. We know that disruption to our climate creates new pathways for pathogens and the spread of disease. We also know that the balm nature provides is never more important to our physical and mental health than in times of anxiety, upheaval, and crisis. Being outdoors is one of the few activities we can safely pursue during this pandemic. And I see the power of nature all around me now—whether hiking with my family in a local park or tending our home garden.

So: Seek out nature when and where you can. Be good to one another. Remember the connections we share. May we emerge with a renewed devotion to kindness and respect for each other and for the planet we call home.

Carter Roberts

President and CEO

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World Wildlife magazine provides an inspiring, in-depth look at the connections between animals, people and our planet. Published quarterly by WWF, the magazine helps make you a part of our efforts to solve some of the most pressing issues facing the natural world.

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