UNICEF Climate Action Advocates plant and distribute 200 trees to mark Earth Day
Trees being planted in schools and communities in four parishes over the next two weeks
KINGSTON, 22 April 2023 – Two hundred trees are being planted and distributed by UNICEF Jamaica’s six Junior and Youth Climate Action Advocates to mark Earth Day on Saturday April 22.
The trees will be planted in schools and communities in four parishes over the next two weeks by Youth Advocates Ryan Martell Jnr and Dejanae Fagan along with Junior Advocates Paige Watson, Jaeden Davis, Taneilyah Roye, and Adjani Reid with help from families and friends. The Advocates hail from Kingston, St Andrew, Clarendon, and Manchester.
“Children and young people have a unique way of mobilizing their peers and UNICEF is partnering with them to bring attention to the various ways we can take better care of our environment,” said Camille Beckford-Palmer, UNICEF Programme Officer for Climate Change and Disaster Risk Reduction. “One sure way is to plant more trees,” she added.
Ten-year old Jaeden Davis, a student at Hope Valley Experimental in St Andrew is one of the Junior Climate Action Advocates. Two of the trees were planted at his school this week. He said that climate change is severely affecting his football dreams.
“I play football all the time but due to climate change, we are experiencing a severe drought, which means that there is not enough water to use. The field we used to play on was full of grass and we had to cut it at least every month. But now, the field is just dry, dusty, and full of stones,” he explained. “This often makes us sick and sometimes we get injured during training or playing games,” young Jaeden shared.
He however, had some suggestions for reducing the impact of climate change at home having observed the water harvesting system at his school. “I think we can apply this system to our households. We can set up water tunnels and water tanks.” Additionally, he recommended installing solar panels on rooftops “because Jamaica gets sunlight all year round” and “practising reforestation, which is planting more trees.”
And everyone should take heed to Jaeden’s appeal: “My fellow Jamaicans, let us try our absolute best to reduce climate change as much as possible. Let us come together as a nation, to help and preserve our beautiful country.”
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children in Jamaica, visit www.unicef.org/jamaica.