Youth Association for Environmental Development and Sustainability (KYAEDS)
recently embarked on a historic tree planting exercise in the Kiang West
village in Lower River Region.
The village youth with the support of soldiers from Pakaliba Military Camp and well-wishers planted about 13, 000 gmalina trees to protect and boost the village’s forest cover.
The Association’s environmental initiative is registered under the community forestry project of the Ministry of Forestry and Environment.
According to the president, Abdoulie Minteh, the tree planting exercise was driven by the level of environmental damages caused by discriminate cutting down of trees, bush fire, natural and other human activities which necessitated the replacement. He said activities inimical to the ecosystem undermine sustainable agricultural practices in the settlement.
He commended the Department of Forestry and Environment under the Minister of Environment and Forestry for their support.
Kebba Janneh Ceesay, a member of KYAEDS said tree planting is a good mitigating factor for climate change, buttressing that climate change causes environmental degradation in many developing countries including The Gambia.
Representing the Department of Forestry, Babanding Sanyang described the exercise as a remarkable example of a community coming together to make a change for the betterment of the future.
He hailed the efforts of the youth association, saying, “The tree planting exercise is a step in the right direction towards achieving the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SGDs) 13 and 15.”
He commended the community of Kiang for taking good care of their forest, cautioning them to fire belt the forest on an annual basis to prevent the calamity of bush fire. “This is a good example we are showing to the younger generation who we would rely on to make positive changes for the future. From small trees grow big forest,” he noted.
President of Keneba Women Association, Pakaya Ceesay hailed the historic tree-planting event, saying it will help in the restoration of the depleted forest and replace some needed trees. “I am extremely proud of the community and all the people who came together to make this tree planting exercise successful,” she added.
Bakary Corr, a representative from The Gambia Armed Forces (GAF) commended all those who have contributed their quota towards making the tree planting a successful event. “I humbly thank all the people of Keneba for their wonderful civil-military relationship with GAF.”