The planting of trees to mark special occasions like confirmations, baptisms and weddings is an increasingly popular practice in many areas of southern and central Africa, after it was suggested and promoted by young Green Anglicans.
But the Province of Burundi is going a step further and is looking to
plant one tree for every one of the 10 million-strong population of the
country. The church hopes to reach its “One Person, One Tree” goal
within the next five years.
The move is designed to protect and maintain forests and improve the environment.
A report last week
showed how the planting of trees on a hillside in provide security for
refugees living on a hillside in Rutana has resulted in a transformed
environment not only for the Tanzanian refugees who have made it their
home; but also for wildlife including moneys and partridges.
to providing shelter for housing, the trees help to prevent flooding
and have resulted in new sources of clean drinking water and improved
The new tree-planting campaign is being supported by Episcopal Relief
& Development, the development agency of the US-based Episcopal
Church. The church has set up nurseries in different provinces of Brundi
and aim to plant the first one million trees, on public and private
land, within the first year.
Ceremonies to mark the launch took place in Muhuta commune in Rumonge
Church leaders were joined by government representatives and
civil society organisations to plant trees alongside Lake Tanganyika.
The Archbishop of Burundi, Martin Nyaboho, said that people should
act responsibly towards their environment.
Burundi’s Minister of Culture
thanked the Church for its contribution and concern for the
environment. He said that the reduction of forested areas could have
serious consequences in the future.
The Mongabay website says that Burundi lost 22.1 per cent of its
forest and woodland habitat between 1990 and 2005 through deforestation.