Sola Ojo, Kaduna
As part of its contribution towards mitigating the effects of Climate Change in Kaduna State, the Centre for Water and Environment Development (CWED) on Saturday distributed 1,000 economy tree seedlings to the residents of Gbagyi Villa in Chikun Local Government Area.
CWED, an NGO founded decades ago by the President of the Nigerian Volleyball Association, Engr Musa Nimrod, has planted over ten thousand mango, sweet apple, avocado, guava, banana, and palm trees in schools, communities and private homes.
CWED Programme Manager Ms Doris Makama told newsmen shortly after the distribution of the seedlings at Gbagyi Villa that her organisation’s interest was to have a cleaner and greener sustainable environment where clean air is breathed and fresh fruits are eaten and, at the same time, the earth is protected against the harsh impact of Climate Change.
According to her, the “Green Project 2020” embarked upon by her organisation is aimed at conserving the environment by way of carrying as many people especially the youths along.
‘We have a project called Green Project where we plant trees in a chosen community or school. The essence of tree planting is to conserve our environment and some of our trees. We also plant for shade and fruits.
‘In this particular outing, we are targeting 200 households with proper documentation so we can monitor the growth of the seedlings at least for the next three years to see how they are able to maintain them.
‘We planned to do this since June when the rain was at its peak but due to COVID-19 and the need to do community mapping, we are now planting in September. But, giving the seedlings to households guarantees sustainability as they will be able to water what they have in their compound even when the rain stops.
‘Tree planting is one of the viable ways to mitigate Climate Change because the more you plant trees, the more you save the environment. Trees absorb a lot of water. What that means is that, when you have a lot of trees and of course, not planted on waterways, then, you hardly have flood.
‘Apart from that, when you have trees, you have shade. So, when weather is hot, you have trees that will give you shade, clean air to breathe and fresh fruits to eat,’ she added.
Regarding the orientation of the projects to homes rather of public places, Makama said: ‘We have unpalatable experience with public schools. The footballers are said to be uprooting those trees. But to us, we believe it was because the school management doesn’t see reasons in beautifying their environment with trees.
‘The Ministry of Education needs to step up in ensuring trees planted in these public schools are protected. On the other hand, the ones we planted in private schools are doing well. To avoid wasting of money, trees and time, we are now diverting the strength to the community where we can guarantee the trees are protected,’he clarified.
Responding on behalf of the people of his community, the Village Head, Gbagyi Villa, Simon Yero, appreciated the gesture by the Centre, promising that his subjects would ensure the trees are planted and monitored.
‘We have been hearing the announcement on the need to plant trees in our homes. Sometimes, people don’t know where to get the seedling and now it is brought to us for free.
‘I will ensure my people plant these trees and I’m going to watch over them to ensure the project is a success here at Gbagyi Villa. We are grateful to CWED,’ he added.