Hello. I'm Amanda. Here are just a few lines about me and my website.
I began building this site in August 2010. I decided to create it, because I was very concerned about bees, and because I believe that people can make a difference by planting lots of flowers in their gardens. I also love sharing my enthusiasm for bees, and want to inspire others!
I have been raising awareness of the plight of bees since 2008, and was very active on twitter from 2009, (my twitter account even featured in the Guardian Eco Top 50 Wildlife & Conservation Accounts in 2010 - much to my surprise - @helpthebees - please note, I am no longer active on Twitter).
Back in 2008, there was little awareness of the problems facing bees, about issues such as habitat loss and the impact of insecticides on bees.
I was one of a very small group of independent campaigners - generating awareness from 2008, but especially active from 2009. We really did put in most of the difficult leg work, and raised our heads above the parapet before major charities eventually came on board - mostly from 2012 onwards.
It was a risk! The group included myself, a few beekeepers, a retired Consultant Anaesthetist and a Dutch toxicologist. It is hard to imagine now, but a number of us had to withstand significant online abuse, and a general disregard from decision makers. It took time to generate the momentum behind the campaign.
None of us had any insurances, formal organisational back-up, finances for legal resources, nor a supportive expert back up team to help us.
One of the most effective ways in which a difference has been created is via written letters (usually to politicians) - I initiated many of these from my website using social media, and short, informal features for local magazines.
I began working with children too, every once in a while, planting pots of wildflowers and making simple bee houses, and giving talks about bees.
I have volunteered for conservation organisations (for example, with fund raising).
I decided to create my website in order to help me spread my message (for one thing, I needed a platform where I could post my lists of flowers for bees (because at that time, there were no major resources on the internet, and very few books) - and for my letter writing campaigns). I also wanted to share my enthusiasm and love for bees.
However, I would just like to say this: my audience is very mixed!
On the one hand, I have to try and create something that is simple and easy to read for children. There are many free resources such as puzzles, posters, and bookmarks.
On the other hand, there are times when I am trying to communicate scientific studies, such as Do bees sleep?, and How far do bees fly?
Add in the fact that I am often a little rushed, so please forgive typos, or any parts which are not very well written - I am aware there are a few of those!
I have to earn a living, and therefore, I allow Google advertising on my website, but I cannot control which ads appear in every country, and I do not have the time to monitor every single one.
Sometimes, ads appear which I do not like. I have successfully blocked some of them, but have found it impossible to block all of them, especially since I have no visibility of the ads shown in different countries all over the world - sometimes in foreign languages.
To be absolutely clear: I support organic, wildlife friendly gardening and farming, and promote these within my website.
do not willingly support or endorse pesticides or pest control companies, and encourage people to leave
bees alone, as well as provide information about how to move bees
humanely if necessary.
I allow Google to advertise on my
site to pay toward the cost of my website package, and to support me in
my awareness campaigning. For several years, campaigning for bees has been a full time task, and like anyone else, I have to support myself.
In other words, if you like my website and buy through my affiliate links into amazon, I will receive a very small commission. Otherwise, you can go to them directly.
If you want to help me to continue in my work, and are a customer of Amazon, you can help me by clicking first on one of these links:
Amazon US orAmazon UK
before making a purchase. You will be directed to an Amazon page, probably featuring a 'bee house' - simply ignore the bee house if that is not what you want, and proceed with your shopping as normal.
I have also recently created a shop - again, I receive a small commission for sales generated.
All the best, and thank you for visiting my website, and I hope you'll come back!
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