In 2012 Greenpop launched Trees for Zambia, a reforestation and eco-awareness project which began with a 3-week tree planting event and was followed by an ongoing campaign to inspire awareness about deforestation, climate change, tree planting, environmental sustainability and alternative energy sources. Trees for Zambia 2013 will be the second Action Event hosted in Livingstone to boost the project and plant over 5000 trees in schools, on subsistence farms and in reforestation sites. Again Greenpop will host educational workshops for school children, subsistence farmers and volunteers. Trees for Zambia is a holistic awareness campaign based on getting people active about making sustainable changes.
From 7th to 28th July 2013, the Trees for Zambia Conference of Action will be held in Livingstone, Zambia. Greenpop invites people, young and old, to come along for 1, 2 or 3 weeks.
What to expect:
Get Active and Dig – plant trees and make solar cookers at local schools and in national parks
Learn – Attend workshops & lectures on current environmental issues
Educate – Teach children about conserving their natural environment (and learn from them too)
Share – Connect with other like-minded local and international volunteers
Explore – Experience the magic of Livingstone, Zambia – home of the majestic Victoria Falls
Zambia: Background and challenges: Zambia has seen rampant deforestation in recent decades, mainly as a result of bad land management, slash and burn farming methods, unsustainable logging and tree cutting for charcoal. The country has one of the highest deforestation rates in the world. According to the UN-REDD programme, Zambia has approximately 50 million hectares of forest, with an estimated deforestation rate of 250,000 to 300,000 hectares per year. In an article published in The Zambia Daily Mail in July 2012 the Director of the Zambian Forestry Department, Mrs Anne Masinja, says:
“Management of the forest has been a challenge following massive deforestation due to charcoal burning, unsustainable agriculture and unsustainable land use practices. The harm caused to the environment due to careless cutting of trees is huge. Loss of forests contributes as much as 30% of global greenhouse-gas emissions each year and this is very dangerous, we need to do something to stop this.”
Implications of Deforestation
The deforestation results in a change in the local ecosystem, a loss of biodiversity and increased incidence of both drought and flooding. It also means a decline in food security due to a reduction of agricultural yields and the loss of valuable forest resources. Additionally, women have to walk further to find wood, resulting in less productivity and children being left alone at home.
Drivers of Deforestation
Some of the main drivers of the drastic deforestation are: energy needs and unreliable/unavailable energy sources and thus a growing dependence of charcoal for heating and cooking; unsustainable farming techniques; population demands; and uncontrolled fires, among others.
For a full Concept Note on the Trees for Zambia project, please click here: http://www.greenpop.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/Trees-for-Zambia-2013-Concept-Note.pdf
Trees for Zambia 2013 – Aims
- Create awareness around the deforestation issue and highlight grassroots solutions that can start being implemented
- Develop a culture of planting trees within communities through conservation education, and by teaching people how to plant and look after trees
- Highlight the global value of conserving the world’s natural forests
- Promote and provide alternative energy sources (particularly solar cooking), so that people can move away from the dependence on charcoal
- Start reforestation in protected forest sites to replace the pioneer trees, allowing for new growth and regeneration of soil content
- Educate children on their natural environment, and help feed them by planting fruit trees at under-privileged schools
- Promote conservation farming methods to replace slash and burn techniques that will stop erosion and soil degradation, create more cost-efficient farms and help avoid fires
- Start a micro tree nursery enterprise at a selected number of subsistence farms, so that we can provide farmers with an additional income by buying trees from them
- Create an exciting and stimulating programme of practical work, lectures and workshops for local and international volunteers, through which they can educate themselves and be actively involved in environmental issues
During the 2012 Action Event, His Royal Highness Chief Mukuni, of Mukuni Village, Livingstone said:
“Greenpop has my full support. The Kalahari Desert is actually touching us already, and Greenpop is repopulating the forests. I think they are going to help us change the mindset of our people.”
Planned activities for Trees for Zambia include:
- Planting trees – we aim to plant over 5000 indigenous and fruit trees as well as the unique Faidherbia albida and Moringa trees for specific reasons in some areas
- Workshops on Setting up Micro-Nursery Enterprises – Greenpop aims to buy as many trees as possible from local small-scale growers and is encouraging a micro nursery industry.
- Conservation Education at Schools
- Promotion of Conservation Farming Methods (includes planting the Faidherbia albida tree in fields) and Fire Prevention
- Promotion of Alternative Energy Sources (particularly solar energy). Greenpop will focus on this in 2013 and has a new project proposal for developing this further which they hope to attract funding for.
- Radio Awareness Campaign in partnership with Zambezi FM
- Video Awareness Campaign – Greenpop’s media partner Makhulu Moving Images started filming a feature-length documentary on deforestation in Zambia during Trees for Zambia 2012. They are still filming for Falling Forests, Zambia and we hope to create widespread awareness of the challenges through this film.
Lauren O’Donnell, Director at Greenpop says: “We are very excited to be hosting this Action Event for the 2nd time. In 2012, it was a first time for Greenpop and it went very well, thanks to our incredible partners on the ground and keen volunteers. The additional focus on solar energy education in 2013 is important and we are looking forward to strengthening partnerships and developing an ongoing awareness drive for environmental sustainability in this beautiful area. So many individuals and organisations are doing great environmental work in Livingstone and surrounds and we hope to be able to assist and highlight this work so that it can spread further and start to have a ripple effect.”
Partners for Trees for Zambia
Greenpop is committed collaborating and to working in association with partners to make the project higher impact and beneficial for as many people as possible. In 2012, we collaborated with the following local authorities and organisations and we aim to further solidify and strengthen these partnerships in 2013. If anyone is interested in partnering or adding value to the project, please contact us.
- Zambian Ministry of Forestry
- Zambian Ministry of Agriculture
- Zambian Ministry of Education
- National Heritage Conservation Commission
- United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
- Conservation Farming Unit (CFU)
- ALERT and Lion Encounter (African Lion and Environmental Research Trust)
- Livingstone Green Initiative (LGI)
Looking for Media Partners
Greenpop is looking for media partners to help us spread the message about the project, promote it as a fun and educational Conference of Action, attract potential tree sponsors (we aim to reach 5000 trees), attract potential partners, spread the awareness about deforestation in Zambia, spread awareness about environmental issues in Southern Africa and the local heroes who are already creating small-scale solutions and need support (like Lloyd in the Trees for Zambia 2012 video – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kGdN8F_igVo )
Please help Greenpop by sharing this press release and the ones to follow. If you are interested in a more formalised media partnership and potentially sending a journalist to the project, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Looking for Tree Sponsors
Greenpop is looking for companies and individuals to sponsor trees for Trees for Zambia. In return for your company’s green investment, you will get a valuable addition to your Corporate Social Responsibility programme, certificates with the GPS coordinates of all your trees as well as other positive marketing values. For more information oto request a sponsorship proposal from Greenpop, please email email@example.com
About Greenpop (www.greenpop.org)
Greenpop is a social enterprise that believes greening and sustainable living can be fun, POPular and accessible for all. We believe in inspiring a greener, more conscious, inclusive movement and do this through tree planting projects, green action events, education, social media, voluntourism and activating people to start DOING! Greenpop started in September 2010 and has since planted over 17,000 trees in over 200 beneficiary schools, crèches, old-age homes, community centres as well as deforested areas in Southern Africa. Creative tree-care programmes have been implemented and children, community members and volunteers are getting their hands dirty, learning a lot and loving it. Greenpop is inspired by the exciting projects we have coming up and the bright green future we see for Africa.
For a summary of what happened at Trees for Zambia 2012, click here: http://www.greenpop.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/Trees-for-Zambia-2012-INFOGRAPHIC.pdf
For more information or any further questions, please contact Lauren O’Donnell:
+27(0)21 461 9265 / +27(0)83 412 8006