KENYA -Tree Planting Programme
We are working with two schools in Kenya, in two distinctly different regions of the country, on a project that forms the basis of environmental studies, provides carbon dioxide sequestration, teaches a useful life skill, and at the same time provides funds to support each school.
Each school receives funds to pay for the planting of trees on a one-acre plot surrounded by fencing to keep animals at bay. Each school provides the plot and the fencing to protect the trees and teachers, children and parents all get involved in the growth and management of the trees. The children are taught how to plant and take care of the trees, providing them with a useful life skill, whilst the carbon dioxide sequestration averages about 300 tonnes per one-acre plot over a fifteen to twenty-year period.
Each school plants up to 400 trees on their plot and after about one year the trees have grown sufficiently to allow the school to use the trimmed branches as firewood for cooking school meals. After ten to twelve years the trees can be harvested and often some £11,000 is raised for school funds to pay for books and other school equipment.
There are other benefits too: teachers can use the working with the trees as a basis for environmental studies, and the trees help in the sequestration of carbon dioxide.
The two schools we work with are in contrasting areas of Kenya.
In the area around Mount Kenya the rains are reliable, so Eucalyptus is planted. A fast-growing tree, its wood produces excellent telegraph poles and construction timber.
Around Kitui, to the east of Nairobi, the land is hot and dry, with no reliable rains. So here an indigenous tree, Melia Volkensli is planted. This tree produces lots of flowers which benefits the bee population and the timber is popular as it is easy to work with and resistant to decay.
At both schools, our Project helps with the education of the children, plays a part in carbon dioxide sequestration, provides the children with a skill for life, and, in a very practical sense, supports the running and development costs of each school.
Despite some delays due to school closures because of Covid-19, trees have now been planted at St James Primary School and Mulima Primary school. Each tree is under the charge of a pupil who will tend his tree as it grows.
After a delay of several months due to the Covid-19 Pandemic we have now received a report that tree-planting has now been completed at our two schools in Kenya. The pupils at Mulima Primary School, in Nakuru County and at St James’ school in Kitui County have now been given their tree, which they will be taught to tend and nurture until the tree can be sold to make a contribution to the operating costs of their school.