In definition of environment, trees have a special standing. Their uses vary from construction to paper making all the way to providing food with fruit tree species such as avocado and mango. A treeless environment is an ugly environment. With this background in mind, tree planting is greatly coveted and efforts to do so are desired at most. Workable approaches should therefore be encouraged and some developed for achieving tree planting. School approach is one of the many strategies that can be utilized in promotion of tree planting to augment the government efforts in increasing the desired forest cover.
Forestry Clubs of Kenya has designed a simple but very productive school-based reforestation model that is unparalleled in view of its viability, duplicability, scalability and sustainability. The model is called Green Schools. We train pupils/students on the roles of trees in conservation of environment, climate change and tree nursery technology. It is important that children grow up with sound knowledge about environmental conservation for a healthier environment now and in the future. In 2009, the Ministry of Environment courtesy of the then Minister for Environment, Hon. John Michuki adopted our Green Schools tree planting model (Daily Nation Newspaper, 8th December, 2009; page 32). The model was later (December, 2013) launched at Michinda Primary school by the President so as to spread to the whole nation. One of the basic strengths of our tree planting model is that schools are assisted to establish medium-scale tree nurseries that enable tree planting both within the schools and with farmers adjacent to the schools who receive the bonus seedlings from the school-based tree nurseries.
This approach is definitely the cheapest shortcut in restoration of the coveted national tree cover. It is the most appropriate approach towards reclamation of the 80% drylands of Kenya which are the only alternative lands for future agriculture for our rapidly growing population. A number of schools have already benefitted from our Green Schools program including: The Kenya High School (Nairobi), Moi Girls (Nairobi), Maryhill Girls (Kiambu), Buurieruri Boys (Meru), Kathanga Primary School (Meru) and Masinga Primary School (Machakos). The next level of our model will see sampled schools adopt all public lands within the Counties to plant trees therein with elaborate Memoranda of Understanding between the schools and County governments. We have started negotiation with the relevant Ministry to bring in National Youth Service (NYS) to reinforce the tree planting effort all meant to give our Counties and the whole nation both a reliable and dependable forest cover. This is in return of improved environment and rainfall yields able to sustain agricultural productivity to ensure national food security for the Kenyan population as we meet the international requirement of 10% tree cover.
This model equally becomes an asset in supporting objectives of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and those of REDD+ program designed to reduce pangs due to global warming and the accompanying climate change.
To achieve our objectives, Forestry Clubs of Kenya has adopted an inter-ministerial approach to partner with these key ministries for enhanced impacts: Environment and Forestry, Education, Public Service, Youth and Gender Affairs and Ministry of Interior and Coordination of National Government. Since forestry Schools tree planting model. This far, our environment is in tatters with a dwindling tree cover for since independence is a devolved unit, all Counties together become an automatic stake in regard of the Green the tree resource has progressively been depleted with much overharvesting of trees and no matching level of replacement.
This partly explains the reason our rivers are drying up. With proper strategizing, we are able to save our environment and the drying rivers. Planting quick-establishing bamboo varieties in water sources is the way to go to have our rivers flow again – we have no excuse but to save them!
To establish a practical and dynamic partnership for transforming rural environments effectively and sustainably via schools towards sound conservation, fighting aridity and negative impacts of climate change.
To shape school youths into responsible beings for the present and future as regards conservation of environment in view of its value in determining population livelihood and national development.
OUR CORE VALUES
- Environment responsiveness
- Nobility in execution of duties
- To empower pupils/students on the need to conserve the environment, these youths being the future owners of the environment.
- To set up medium-scale tree nurseries in institutions of learning so that these institutions become continuous sources of seedlings to facilitate whole community reforestation.
- To establish Forestry clubs in schools of the nation of Kenya towards promotion of a culture of sound and sustainable environmental conservation.
- To engage pupils/students in the actual tree planting and in dissemination of relevant environmental information to the rest of the society.
- To mobilize and bring together like-minded, environment-loving stakes for increased positive environmental impacts.