Campaign for 20,000 new trees launched


Minister Payet kick-starting the Green Wave projectEnvironment and Energy Minister Dr Rolph Payet kick started the project at Mont Fleuri primary school where he stressed the value of trees, noting they take years to grow yet regrettably, only minutes to cut down.

As the event began, the two children who acted as masters of ceremony -- Emily Michaud and Calvin Malbrook -- noted that President James Michel and Didier Robert of the Regional Council of Reunion started an initiative to plant 10,000 trees on Ile Perseverance, hailing it as a sound example for the new project.

Friday’s ceremony was attended by among others the Minister for Education Macsuzy Mondon who – along Dr Payet , high ranking government officials, students, teachers as well as other dignitaries – planted trees at the school, in an event which also marked Children’s Day.

The campaign was initiated by the National Tree Planting Campaign Committee formed in March 2012 comprising of members from both government and non-governmental organisations.

Dr Payet honoured five Seychellois who have been keenly planting trees and conserving nature, namely Artville Cedras, Fernande Sirame, Victorin Laboudallon, Melitine Baccus and Willy Andre by giving them awards, some of them in absentia.

He also received planting tools donated by Jothinathan Naidoo of Surya Enterprises to the Landscape and Waste Management Agency (LWMA).

Minister Payet accepting the donation of planting tools from Mr Naidoo 

For the project, plants have been distributed to all educational institutions from primary through secondary to post-secondary schools who planted them in activities involving school councils as well as members of the community. 

Environment education officer Shane Emilie told the media the tree planting campaign will go on in schools throughout the year, intensifying on other environment theme days, school beautification and food security projects.

“The idea behind such a campaign in schools is to also educate the school community on the importance of trees and how we can contribute for its conservation,” he said.

The school’s head teacher, Marie-Therese Elizabeth, said launching the campaign in a school showed confidence in that children and teachers can help the aims of the project to be achieved and they can make a difference for the environment.

“We cannot survive without trees,” she said, urging all partners to promote the importance of trees among students and pupils, raising their awareness and helping them nurture and protect the trees.

Mrs Beaver hands over the magazine and CD to PS Delcy

During the ceremony, Katy Beaver of Plant Conservation Action group handed the principal secretary for education Merida Delcy the organisation’s copies of the latest issue of the its magazine, Kapisen and an educational CD.