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Planting timber with the Inexperienced Belt motion

Jen Cullerton Johnson, creator of Seeds of Change and The story of environmentalist Wangari Maathai, visits Kenya to discover the legacy of Wangari Maathai. Along with a gaggle of educators, scientists and neighborhood companions, they observe within the footsteps of Wangari’s life; plant timber, go to major faculty college students, meet neighborhood members, attend university-led mini-lectures, and take part in environmental and conservation subject experiences. Jen shares extra about this expertise in at present’s publish.

In 2010 and 2020 Lee & Low respectfully revealed my books Seeds of Change and The story of environmentalist Wangari Maathai. Each books are biographies of Wangari Maathai, the primary African lady to win the Nobel Prize (2004) for her work on the setting and ladies’s rights.

Because the founding father of the Inexperienced Belt motion, Wangari Maathai noticed the devastating results of deforestation in Kenya. International corporations in Kenya are chopping down forests to make manner for tea and low plantations. With out timber, animals had much less shelter and meals sources, and rivers dried up as a result of tree roots not held soil within the riverbanks. Girls and ladies needed to stroll for miles for firewood and their water sources dwindled. Wangari Maathai noticed that every one issues are linked. In 1977, she co-founded the Inexperienced Belt Motion with different girls, the place she taught girls and ladies how you can plant and look after a tree. If the tree survived, the ladies and ladies could be paid to look after the tree.

Members of the Inexperienced Belt

In the present day, the Inexperienced Belt Motion has develop into a world image for the setting and ladies’s rights. However as well-known because the group turns into, it continues to coach communities world wide about planting and caring for timber.

Via encounters with girls of the Inexperienced Belt Motion in Ihithe, Nyeri and the hometown of Wangari Maathai, I realized first hand about tree planting.

“First, you need to develop the seedling with care, listening to water and daylight. Within the seedling stage, the tree is most susceptible and desires care,” Teresa Wawareu instructed. She has labored for the Inexperienced Belt Motion for 20 years and has planted 1000’s of timber. “A tree is viable if it survives three years. Throughout these three years, we handle the timber as in the event that they had been our youngsters. After that point, the tree will develop by itself,” she explains.

Seedlings for planting

Earlier than Wangari Maathai handed away in 2011, she made nice strides in bringing younger folks into the environmental motion. In Ihithe, a number of younger folks have contributed to the planting of timber. When requested about their experiences planting timber, many provided that planting timber helped them join with their households and their communities.

“I am happy with our timber,” stated Joi Kangeri, a fifth-grader. “I do know that our timber make a distinction on the earth.”

Making a distinction is what the Inexperienced Belt Motion does by planting timber and sharing their message. We as educators and fogeys can take part and work with them to avoid wasting our planet and produce our communities collectively. For extra details about the ebook Seeds of Changethe Inexperienced Belt Motion, and to have your college students be a part of a Zoom Kenya scholar friendship alternate program, please contact me at

Jen Cullerton Johnson is a author, educator, and environmentalist with a grasp’s diploma in nonfiction writing and curriculum growth. She teaches at each the elementary and faculty ranges in Chicago, the place she additionally conducts writing workshops. Johnson will be discovered on-line at

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