28 Nov 2009

Barbora Neversil - SVS/BirdLife Switzerland

My name is Barbora Neversil: I started just one year ago to work for SVS/BirdLife Switzerland as Communication and Information Manager. My work is so varied that it feels like only a few days ago: communication of the Bird of the year and for the biodiversity strategy, raising awareness for the protection of snails (!) and for migratory birds….. just to name a few of the tasks. Before joining SVS/BirdLife Switzerland I worked for many years as a journalist and senior news-editor for the Swiss broadcasting corporation. And I took a postgraduate degree in Political Communication since I have always been fascinated by communication and politics. I am also a field ornithologist and vice-president of a local association near Berne, the wonderful capital of my country, and its river Aare, where I live. Nature has always been important to me and is now even more so. Therefore it is a privilege for me to combine professional skills with my personal engagement. And it is a pleasure to help promoting the work and the ideas of SVS/BirdLife Switzerland, even more because of its international aspect. My country has a long tradition of different cultures living and working together. In BirdLife all the Partners do the same and it is great to be part of such an active network of grassroots organizations and dedicated people. SVS/BirdLife Switzerland is a federation itself, with 19 cantonal associations and 460 local groups. My colleagues from the ORNIS magazine, Info BirdLife Suisse and I keep our more than 60’000 members and the media and public informed. At BirdLife Switzerland we work mainly in German and French, sometimes in Italian and only rarely in Rumantsch. Does that sound complicated? Sometimes it is, but it’s just perfect for me: As a binational (Czech-Swiss) I like to communicate with lots of different people in different languages. But of course life is not only about work and Switzerland is not the only country with fascinating landscapes. I also love Scandinavian landscapes and nature. Usually my husband and I spend our summer holidays in Sweden, with beavers, cranes and elks just around the corner and bears and wolves just behind the next hill. Switzerland is a great and greatly demanding place: The nature and the country are varied: from the Rhine river to the peaks of the Alps, species, sites and habitats differ a lot. So do the cultural parts from Geneva to Berne, from Lucerne to Locarno or from Zurich to Davos – they are all different and so is the protection and communication work of SVS/BirdLife Switzerland and its local organizations. The biggest pleasure for me is every spring to discover that Barn Swallows Hirundo rustica and Common Swifts Apus apus of my village have come back again. We like their calls, we watch their artistic flight and we admire their capability of traveling thousands of kilometers without any technical help. I really hope my work helps that this will stay so for many, many years to come. This blog post is from BirdLife’s European Newsletter. To register for the letter, please click here.