Roots & Shoots youth raise funds for trees in Tanzania

After a year of literally sowing seeds of hope, participants in the “ReBirth the Earth: Trees for Tomorrow” campaign—as part of Jane Goodall’s global Roots & Shoots youth program—have something to celebrate:

Raised: $16,415 (USD)
Planted: 3,550 trees

The youth-initiated and youth-led campaign blew the top off of its tree-planting and fundraising goals, which were to raise $10,000 for five Roots & Shoots tree nurseries in Tanzania while planting 3,000 trees in the United States. Campaign organizers called on young people across the US to panda miti (Swahili for “plant trees”) and get sponsorships for every tree planted. Our campaign was supported by Animal Planet and the National Arbor Day Foundation and led by Campaign Chairperson Bryan Lairmore.

Money raised paid for seedlings, their transport, nursery tools, and training youth in Tanzania how to start and maintain nurseries. Now, Roots & Shoots members from three schools in Moshi, near Mount Kilimanjaro, have put 1,351 seeds into sprouting beds. Meanwhile, in the Morogoro region, young Roots & Shoots members began bedding seeds this month, hoping to have 10,000 seedlings ready for planting by year-end. As the youth work to establish the tree nurseries, they’re learning about local tree species and sustainable growing practices.

The ReBirth the Earth campaign started in 2006, after 10 Roots & Shoots youth leaders from the US traveled to Tanzania as part of an immersion experience. While there, they joined local Roots & Shoots groups in planting trees and learned there was a need for more nurseries.

“This is a fantastic and exciting campaign, because it is completely conceived, organized and implemented by our Roots & Shoots young people,” said Dr. Goodall. “These youth are gaining the worldly knowledge and practical skills to make a real difference in their own communities and in the communities of their new-found friends in Tanzania.”

 

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