Tree Planting on Rural School Grounds, is it Important?

By Maria Paul

Deforestation is a national and global issue which contributes towards climate change, biodiversity loss, soil erosion as well as negatively impacting peoples’ livelihood.

Planting trees is a small step to mitigate this deforestation crisis.

During National Arbor Week 2020, this is exactly what environmentalist Maria Paul decided to do: plant as many trees as she could in schools that really need them.

Trees planted in school environments provide opportunities for environmental education, encouraging young children to think about environmental conservation.

As part of her earth journey, Miss Paul, managed to plant 25 trees altogether in 7 underprivileged schools in Eastern Cape. The trees were planted with learners teams doing the spadework, literally!

Many of our school grounds are bare and lifeless. Planted trees provide interest, as well as shade and fruit for school children and teachers. Trees are best planted along the school’s boundary to improve native flora biodiversity and further enhance the area’s natural aesthetics. Children are taught about the importance of trees, the essential role they play in our natural environment. Environmental awareness amongst the young will hopefully create wider sensitivity to keeping the environment clean and protecting our future sustainably.

Trees planted included, 10 Olea Africana and 5 Eulea Natalensis 10 Harpephyllum Caffrum, which were received as donations from generous nurseries in the Lower South Coast.

Schools that the trees were planted were: Mdatya Senior Secondary School, Phakamisa Primary School, Thembalesizwe Comprehensive Technical Senior Secondary School, Nomagqwathekana Comprehensive Technical High School, A.D. Tshayingca Senior Secondary School, Cangci Comprehensive Technical High School and Vulindlela Comprehensive Technical High School.

mariajpaul@gmail.com