MRCS says involvement of children in tree planting crucial

Nsanje, Malawi Red Cross Society (MRCS) has underscored the need to involve children in tree planting exercise, saying the practice has potential to instill a culture of environmental management in the next generations.

MRCS Coordinator for Nsanje, Patricia Gadi made the sentiments on Monday after the organization through Climate Change and Adaptation Project with support from Flemish Government through Belgium Red Cross Society distributed 10,000 tree seedlings to schools in the areas of traditional authorities Ndamela and Chimombo in the district.

Gadi said the idea of providing and planting trees seeks to put children in the forefront of tree-planting and climate change efforts to help conserve the environment to mitigate effects of climate change.

The notion is meant to educate children on the dangers of environmental degradation through wanton cutting down of trees without replacement which has far reaching consequences on our environment, she said.

In most cases, children are the ones who bear the brunt when the environment is degraded, said Gadi, adding that this is one of the mitigation measures to reduce disaster risks.

Gadi said involvement of children in planting trees also helps young ones to learn a lot about the importance of conserving the environment for posterity and also enhance their knowledge in environmental conservation.

She added that when children are involved in tree planting, they develop a sense of purpose and ownership considering that they are engaged in something for their own benefit.

That is why Malawi Red Cross Society thought of engaging the schools in the area we are working in Nsanje district and provide them with the much needed support such as procurement of tree seedlings and involve them in tree planting exercise, Gadi said.

Makoka Primary School Head teacher, Richard Shawa, whose school is among the beneficiaries of MRCS support, applauded the organization for the support, saying learners have a role in the restoration of the country’s vegetative cover.

Shawa said the schools which have received the support are committed towards providing care for the seedlings to ensure high survival rate, stressing that each learner would adopt a maximum of three tree seedlings to look after.

Apart from trees being a source of beauty; trees have some other benefits: they provide shed, clean air and define recreational areas. Therefore, we are tasked to provide post-planting care for the seedlings adopted till they leave the school, said Shawa.

A total of 10, 032 tree seedlings which include fruit and coconut trees have been provided.

MRCS in collaboration with Nsanje District Council has also facilitated the process of tree planting along the Nyachilenda and Nyachipere river banks.

Source: MANA Online