On 23.10.2013, 54 children from 5 schools in and around Letchworth, UK, took part in the latest of a series of Plant-for-the-Planet Academies made possible thanks to FedEx. The Academy took place at St. Christopher School, and their student Climate Justice Ambassadors led the day; the 54 children present learned about global warming, climate justice and gained the public speaking skills essential for taking global action. “Many commented on the quality of the presentations given…” wrote St. Christopher’s headmaster wrote in the school’s newsletter. School children from St Christopher (junior and senior) School took part, as well as from neighbouring schools St Thomas More, The Knights Templar and Highover. The newly empowered Climate Justice Ambassadors planted 102 trees native to the UK as a contribution to the 1,000 billion trees that the children of Plant-for-the-Planet want to plant, together with the adults, by 2020.
The planting was a resounding success. The children were able to plant at the local Radwell Meadows thanks to the Letchworth Garden City heritage foundation, who manage the land there. A small team from the heritage foundation led the planting and Beth McDougall wrote in glowing terms about the planting on the heritage foundation’s blog,
“Greenway Ranger Martyn led the planting, teaching children the best way to plant their trees. It was lovely to see how eagerly they hung on Martyn’s every word as some of the children prepared to plant a tree for the first time.
There was a real atmosphere of community spirit as children from the different schools helped each other to plant the trees. I was really drawn to the connections with the Letchworth Pioneers who began their own Arbor Day in 1908, 105 years earlier, and whose trees now surround the town, not as little whips and saplings but as established specimens.”
The children’s efforts made front page news of The Comet and were also covered by The Advertiser.
The Academy was made possible thanks to the generous support and sponsorship of FedEx UK. Trevor Hoyle, Managing Director of Ground Operations UK and Ireland, FedEx Express and FedEx UK, said “We are very impressed with how children and young people in Letchworth and around the world are getting involved with Plant for the Planet. They know that this can really make a difference. And we are delighted to be able to support them.”