The twelfth academy in Boluwaji, Ibadan took place on 6th October, 2018. 81 children from eight different schools were keenly waiting for the academy to start. The event was free-of-charge for all attending children, aged from 9 to 12. Together with 44 invited guests, members of civil societies, school administrators, teachers and staff of Prince O Concepts, the Plant-for-the-Planet group, they spend wonderful day learning about the climate crisis.
Prince Olawuyi Seyi, the program coordinator welcomed all participants and specially thanked the invited guests for honouring the invitation. Then the full attention of the children turned to the presentation “Now we children save the world!” given by Climate Justice Ambassador Miss Adetona Victoria. Complex topics, such as sources of CO2, global warming, photosynthesis, the climate crisis and global justice were presented in a suitable way for children – and nobody could be better for that task than a child of the same age as the participants. After the presentation, everyone had the chance to clarify his or her questions about the adverse effects of climate change in Nigeria.
Now the participants watched the film “The Man who planted Trees” and refreshments were served. For the following part the children were divided into small groups, to learn about global distribution and global justice in the so called “World Game”. The children distributed tokens, sweets and balloons among the continents displayed on the world map. The three playing figures symbolize the world’s population, wealth and CO2 emissions respectively. After seeing the real life distribution of these resources, all children agreed that the distribution was unjust. Although only 0.5 percent of the population live in North America, they possess almost 30% of the world income and emit 20% of CO2 emissions. Therefore the children redistributed the sweets and balloons, in order to visualize how a fair distribution would look like and to keep in mind that everyone should have equal rights.
Now the children had the opportunity to take action for their future right away: They went to plant trees! Mr Dolapo Olasunkanmi, a farmer and forester explained how to plant trees, when to plant and how to take care of them. The participants planted eight Moringa seedlings. The children finished the planting event with a magnificent “Stop Talking, Start Planting” battle cry!
After that, the World Café started. During this activity the participants were collecting ideas on how to motivate adults, friends and classmates and how to organize a planting party in order to improve the awareness for the climate crisis. Afterwards the children gathered in their school groups and planned their own projects, which they want to implement after the academy.
At the end of the World café, the group leaders informed the participants and guests about their determination to plant more trees, to promote the concepts in their schools and partnering with media houses. They agreed to use social media to promote Plant-for-the-Planet in Nigeria and to solicit supports.
Apart from the experience and gained knowledge, all participants were appointed as Ambassadors for Climate Justice and received a certificate, a Plant-for-the-Planet t-shirt and the book ‘Tree-by-Tree’. Organizers and guests were very impressed by the performance of the children. Prince Olawuyi Seyi, the program coordinator used the occasion to appreciate some notable school administrators.
The principal of Lifeline Group of Schools, Mr Akinade, expressed his joy and thanked the organisers of the event for packaging an environmental educative program. He also thanked Plant-for-the-Planet for coming up with the idea of involving Children in environmental issues. Deaconess Olaide Adegoke also thanked the organiser and urged them to continue this laudable program.
The academy was made possible thanks to the commitment of Prince O Concepts and YVE Nigeria. Special thanks go to the administrator of Adeojo Group of Schools for providing the Adeojo Multipurpose Hall.
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