7-year-old Ellyanne Chlystun Githae watering a tree
In Kenya, the widespread cutting of trees is a leading cause of environmental degradation. The practice is a major contributor to poverty, drought and famine.
80% of the world’s forests are already destroyed.
80,00 acres of forest disappear from the Earth every day!
300 billion tones of carbon are stored in the earth forests, which help regulate its climate by regulating atmospheric gases, stabilizing rainfall, and protecting against desertification
To address this, 7-year-old Ellyanne Chlystun-Githae has taken up tree planting.
Ellyanne started tree planting in 2015. At a mere age of 4 years. She did a project in Kindergarten on heroes due to their work in impacting the world. These heroes included Martin Luther King Jr, Wangari Maathai, Barack Obama, Henry Wanyoike among others. She later narrowed down to Wangari Maathai and Hennry Wanyoike as people she would want to emulate.
Ellyanne Chlystun Githae planting ta tree with Cheleta Primary pupils
Why Wangari Maathai? Ellyanne’s Achievements
Ellyanne feels that what Maathai believed in is one of the most important things in the world…planting trees. She believes all trees were planted by Wangari Maathai, who will be upset in heaven seeing them being cut. She says that even projects like infrastructure development which lead to mass cutting of trees should be re-thought and alternative measures to be taken so as to avoid tree cutting! As her contribution to mitigate deforestation, Ellyanne has planted 321 trees mainly in Karura Forest.
Her passion and zeal has not gone unnoticed. Young Ellyanne was invited by UNEP Nairobi on 5th June 2017, for the celebrations of World Environment Day, whose theme was Connecting with Nature. She was excited to listen to great people like the Director-General of the United Nations Office at Nairobi (UNON), Madame Sahle-Work Zewde.
As a build up to World Environment Day 2017 Ellyanne planted 12 trees with young students on 31st May in Karura forest, Joined Youth at USIU University on 4th June for an environment awareness talk & planted 2 trees. She received a Certificate of Recognition, for her participation. She also joined Mr. & Miss Environment on 3rd June for fashion show geared towards creating awareness on the environment at Southern Sun May Fair Hotel
Ellyanne’s mother, Dorothy Githae, has supported her daughter’s passion by starting a tree nursery in their backyard. They currently have 600 tree seedlings of INDIGENOUS, EXOTIC TREES & FLOWERS that they aim to plant by end of 2017 in collaboration with kids from Cheleta Primary School (a school for Githogoro & Huruma Slums kids) located in Runda.
Tree planting is an important measure in combating global warming. They absorb carbon dioxide and produce oxygen, contribute to soil health, retain water, and cool overheated urban areas. The earth needs more trees! With passion like Ellyanne’s, probably we may be able to plant just enough trees to solve global warming.
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