One thing that keeps coming up in the press here in Africa, if not in a lot of places worldwide, is the issue of deforestation in Kenya. It’s a huge problem here where many rural people need wood for fuel, and contributes enormously to drought, amongst all the other harmful effects of loss of trees that are commonly known as soil erosion.

Kenya has less than 1.6% forested land, markedly lower than what is considered acceptable at 10%.

Many people talk “tree planting or tree seedling projects”.

What about our idea of teaching schoolkids to collect their own seeds, make seedbeds from local materials, sprout seedlings. Then transplant and care for the trees until they grow?

For tree planting projects, one needs to get seedlings, distribute them, then get people to keep the trees protected from pest/goats/diseases until they mature. These costs a lot of money and requires good organization. It is also much more difficult to get someone to take care for something that is given to them than for someone to plant, grow and nurture something of their own. We were able to do a very successful, small pilot project in Sagalla near Voi. We need funding to make this teaching available to more schools, teachers and communities all over the region.

The cost of teaching a group these skills is minuscule compared to the cost of implementing the planting of trees someone else has grown! And, the benefit to having taught a skill to so many people have a lifelong benefit to that person, their area, and the protection of the planet.