ClipWhy Citizen Science – Mara Davi Gaines

This month, we’re asking folks why they personally want to be involved in Citizen Science. Meet Mara Davi Gaines, a Broadway and television actress and zero-waste advocate who just learned about Citizen Science. Hear how she plans to incorporate it into her nature-loving lifestyle and why she believes everyone should find ways to connect with nature.

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- I've never heard the term citizen scientist before, but I think it makes complete sense for this information to be shared, peer shared, between everyone who is connecting with nature in their own backyards and in their communities.

(calming music) Hi, I am Mara Davi Gaines, and I am a Broadway film and television actress living in New York City.

I have had the privilege to perform in the revival of A Chorus Line, The Drowsy Chaperone, White Christmas, Dames at Sea, The Play That Goes Wrong.

Those are all on Broadway.

Many wonderful regional theater productions as well as television, Blue Bloods, Smash, FBI, Mysteries of Laura.

I grew up in Colorado, which I would say is the best place to get into nature.

Everyone there is very outdoorsy, but I was so busy being shuttled to rehearsals and performances that I took the mountains and the Colorado river and the plains, all of that beauty I took it for granted.

So it really wasn't until I had been living in New York City of all places for about six years that my husband and I moved into a new apartment and we had a little plot of land that we got to take care of out back.

We planted some vegetables and we watched them grow, and that was the beginning of a whole new chapter in our lives.

We started to see the beginning of life.

You start to appreciate where things come from.

And once you see things at the start and you start to pay attention to the whole life cycle then you really care about where they end up.

We agreed to start on this journey of just cutting back on our waste, seeing how far we could go.

I heard someone say recently, specifically about zero waste living, that it's not about one person doing zero waste perfectly.

It's about a whole bunch of us doing waste imperfectly.

And I think that very same thing applies to connecting with nature and taking care of this beautiful planet that we get to live on.

It's not about a few activists getting out there and working 12 hours a day.

What if every one of us just took five minutes to reconnect?

I think, I think it would just explode.

I really think it could be a game changer for climate change and just the way we live.

While you're just taking your five minutes to do your part and help the citizen science movement and help collect data, you're also opening up a new door in yourself, a door of appreciation.

And I think it also gives a focus to what you're doing, to count the bees when you go out, you know.

It gives you an extra reason to step out the door and get outside to know, when I go on this hike, I'm going to keep an eye out for this bird or this plant, and gives you an excuse to learn something new.

So I'm excited.

I feel like I've done the first step now knowing what a citizen scientist is.

I'm excited to go out with that focus and share what's going on in my neck of the woods.

Hey, I'm Mara Davi Gaines and climate change is why I'm committed to nature.