The government of Japan through its supplement budget has set aside 3,000 $ to cater for nursery preparations in 20 schools and we have also commenced a plant tree for a book initiative that is doing well as pupils are awarded an exercise book after planting 50 seedlings, this is meant to create environmental awareness for the pupils-Community road empowerment project manager Yuka Iwamura
By Andanje Wakhungu
The government of Japan has donated tree seedlings to a school in Kakamega North Sub County as one way of educating pupils on the importance of maintaining the environment. Friends Malava Primary School was shortlisted as among the 20 public schools to implement the one million tree nursery project.
The project entails the construction of tree nurseries under the FLaRAK project (Forestry and Land Restoration Action for Kenya’s NDC and funded by the government of Japan through the United Nations development programme (UNDP) and implemented by community road empowerment (CORE) is targeting schools intending to transfer of environmental awareness to pupils at an early age to empower and equip them with the necessary skills to be used in moulding the future of the forest cover.
The Community road empowerment project manager Yuka Iwamura said the project was aimed at involving the community to embrace planting and conserving their environment and ensure a steady supply of seedlings to farmers in line with the government agenda of increasing its forest cover. “We have targeted primary schools as models in areas where its ecosystem is friendly including Kakamega (4), Narok (8), Kaptagat (6) and Vihiga (2) where as we also carry out other projects on road maintenance, environment and horticulture in other parts of the country. The government of Japan through its supplement budget has set aside 3,000 $ to cater for nursery preparations in 20 schools and we have also commenced a plant tree for a book initiative that is doing well as pupils are awarded an exercise book after planting 50 seedlings, this is meant to create environmental awareness for the pupils.
The Core board chairman and technical advisor Dr Kiptanui Too said the project will be an income-generating activity for the school as they will sell the trees to the locals and use the funds to sustain the nursery, pay the workers and carry out needed development at the institution.
“It is important to involve schools in the restoration of the environment as they (pupils) will broadcast the same information to their families back in the village and we are diversifying our seedlings to other areas from the usually centralized nurseries and that is why we have specific species of trees for each environment.
We identify our tree species from the ecosystem and they are the ones we reproduce in these nurseries” The head teacher Caleb Sichenga said the school was all set to take over the project and assured them of its sustainability adding that the project will green the school and its environment urging the community to support the project by purchasing seedlings for planting.
“The only problem we have is water but now the rains are here and we plan to have a borehole by June this year that will assist us with irrigation purposes and we are also happy that Core is planning to construct environmentally friendly Jiko stoves at the school as their next project.”
Community Road Empowerment (CORE) – CORE Kenya is an international NGO registered in Japan (2007) and Kenya (2008) with its main aim being to empower the communities to maintain the rural access roads using, “Do-nou” technology from Japan to improve their agricultural production and to conserve the environment for poverty and hunger eradication. They are spread in 15 countries worldwide where they are working on implementing varieties of projects to reduce poverty levels.