Efforts of the Plant-for-the Planet around the world especially in sub-Sahara Africa are amazing and commendable. Plant-for-the Planet as an organization discovered the most essential component of the society to tap into for environmental sustainability, and that essential part is the Youth. In Liberia Plant-for-the Planet, Germany has opened a Plant-for –the Planet academy. This academy is geared towards encouraging young hearts to environmental consciousness.
The academy admits youths from the ages of 8-16 years old for a long period of time and eventually graduates as effective tools for environmental activists, community pressure groups and many more.
As African Voices deepens to know more of this academy, Plant-for-the Planet and its local partner-Youth Exploring Solution (YES) further revealed the purpose as to thoroughly educate children about environmental and Justice issues thereby inspire them to take action; give children the needed skills and opportunities to become Climate justice Ambassadors so as to empower their own friends and families about the Vision to plant trees and achieve climate justice; further analyzing the purpose, it says empower the children so that they too can tackle global challenges as part of global movement; thus preparing them with necessary tools and skills to do public speaking, speech writing and presentation techniques, advocacy, campaigning and awareness savvy is the core of the trainings at the academy.
With the academy campaign project of planting 1 million trees in the country and besides creating urban eco-forest, they will contribute in greening Monrovia. Indeed, there will be a lot of task for these would-be young climate ambassadors. Taking time to record the purpose of this academy is worthwhile as Liberia is home to 43% of the remaining West African rainforest, though there are severe accounts of Illegal logging, pit-sawing and rampant use of Chainsaw in the Liberian forests.
Now the challenge before these academy youths and Liberian young generation is not to sit reluctantly and allow adults destroy the forest through legal and illegal logging activities without taking any action. Practical actions like tree planting, inform, and inspire their parents, friends and families to undertake planting trees initiative on schools and communities so as to reduce carbon emission footprints and safeguard the planet for future generation. However mantle of task and action are given to these young children to become good steward of their surroundings so as to ensure a clean and healthy environment for them and generation to come. Recounting that human activities are somewhat destroying the ecological system, habitats, food chain, and a host of environmental components in the areas of energy, water, food, waste and ecology and other benefits associated with sustainable development.
Obviously yes to the academy as Liberia environmental problems cannot be solved through a single entity like the Environmental Protection Agency of Liberia but with collective efforts of the citizens and stakeholders to gainfully tackle the environmental challenges.
Plant-for-the Planet is a global children’s initiative in which children empower other children in Plant-for-the Planet Academies. These children tell others about the climate crisis and take action by planting trees. Plant-for-the Planet was first developed in Germany by nine years old Felix Finkbeiner, while doing research for a school assignment, Felix came across the story of Wangari Maathai (Kenyan), laureates who had planted more than 30 million trees in 30 years. At the end of his presentation, Felix envisioned a future in which children could plant a million trees in every country on earth, to help absorb harmful carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere.
Over the years Plant-for-the Planet developed into a world movement; today there are over 100,000 children in 100 different countries campaigning for reduction in CO2 emission and climate justice in terms of a fair distribution of the emissions rights for all people around the world. While the adults keep on talking, the children say: STOP TALKING, START PLANTING!
A word to save mother earth!
Jacob Eagan Bright
African Voices, Liberia