Altogether 76 students from eight schools attended the academy in St. Patrick Inter College, Poliganj, Uttarakhand, India.
The academy was made possible with the dedicative commitment of Plant-for-the-Planet Foundation, St. Patrick Inter College Poliganj and members of YCSG and TGIC eco club. All children, who were 10-14 years old, could attend the event for free. Special thanks goes to Plant-for-the-Planet academy staff Adelya for helping me throughout the academy. We would also like to thank Sr. Pressy D’souza and Mr. Narendra Rautela for helping us contact all schools and for providing us venue and other basic facilities for the academy. Not to be forgotten are the many helpers and supporters, without whom the implementation of the Academy, venue, technology, Tree-planting event and much more would not have been possible.
After a brief welcome and registration process the full attention of the children turned to the presentation "Now we children save the world!” Which was given by Plant-for-the-Planet Coordinators Rohit Bisht and Dharmendra Kapri. The presentation covered: Introduction of Plant-for-the-Planet, sources of CO2, the green-house effect, global warming, photosynthesis, climate change, climate crisis and climate justice. These topics were explained in a very simple language and in an easy way. After the presentation, the children had the opportunity to ask questions in an interactive answer session.
After a short break, the children were divided into 6 groups to learn about global distribution and justice in the “World Game”. The children distributed playing figures, candy, balloons and world maps which were laid out on the floor. The figures were placed on the maps respective of the world’s population, wealth and CO2 emissions. Each group had one moderator from our academy team to help them understand the rules and the process. The children were first asked to distribute the balloons, candy and tokens as per as their knowledge. Later on they were corrected by the moderator wherever needed. Eventually, the CO2 emissions and wealth were distributed fairly – everyone has equal rights.
After that the children formed 6 public speaking groups in which they prepared and presented short passages from the opening presentation that they had seen at the start of the day. They gave each other tips on how to improve their presentations in the future. A short session on how to give a good presentation was conducted by Miss Priyanka Chand and Mr. Dharmendra Kapri.
The children then broke for lunch and were able to relax a little and to discuss the topics covered so far.
After lunch was over, the afternoon kicked off with short introductive videos on Plant-for-the-Planet and on how Plant-for-the-Planet plants trees in Mexico. During the presentation session the children were very curious to learn more about Plant-for-the-Planet and how we plant trees all over the world.
Rested, and feeling energized, the children relocated to the schoolyard to plant their own trees! Before the planting commenced, the children listened intently to the advice of the Eco club member in charge: Mr. Om Prakash Singh. He explained how and when to plant trees, and also showed the children how to care for the trees in order to make sure that they survive. In total they planted 16 trees (Azadirachta indica, Cassia fistula, Magnifera Indica, Indian Gooseberry, Psidium guajava) in just 45 minutes with the assistance of the Eco Club Members and YCSG members.
After a short break they went back to the program. The children started the "World Café" module in which they worked on the following questions, separated into four modules: "How do we ensure that the media reports about us?", "How do we motivate the adults?", "How do we motivate friends and classmates?" and "How do we organize a planting party?"
After everyone had the opportunity to write down their thoughts to each question, the children were asked to present their thoughts and future plans in front of other students and teachers.
After the World Café all the participating kids were asked to give a shortened version of their morning presentations, their future plans and outcomes of the school groups and group discussions.
After a long, productive, and enjoyable day, all 76 participants received their certificates from Sr. Pressy D’Souza and Mr. Dharmendra Kapri, which recognized them as a Climate Justice Ambassador. An interesting day had come to an end. Apart from the experience and newly found knowledge, all new Ambassadors took with them a copy of Tree-by-Tree, and of course the Plant-for-the-Planet T-shirt they collected at the start of the day.
The organizing team of Plant-for-the-Planet academy Poliganj, India would like to thank all those involved for their help and support to make this academy possible.
Are you interested in breaking the record of the Poliganj children or in participating yourself? Then visit our website or write an email to: [email protected] and take action! Every tree counts!
All pictures taken can be downloaded here.