EYEAFRICA TV: Bullock, The Gambia: A staunch young environmental group in Foni Berefet village of Bulock, who call themselves Bulock Kapongha Youth Development Association (BKYDA), have collaborated with the Global Youth Innovation Network (GYIN)- Gambia chapter and other youth associations over the weekend that saw the planting of over 4000 different tree species in the community’s forest.
The exercise was conducted under the theme: Fight against global warming.
Trees contribute to the environment by providing oxygen, improving air quality, climate amelioration, conserving water, preserving soil, and supporting wildlife. During the process of photosynthesis, trees take in carbon dioxide and produce the oxygen that is breathe.
Foni Berefet National Assembly member Sunkary Badjie described the exercise as extremely vital, that will help them to maintain and rejuvenate the virtually lost forest cover.
He said indiscriminate and irresponsible activities of tree cutting have affected the forest cover, but with this initiative, the forest will be protected for the best interest of the community and the country.
The Association’s secretary Sarjo Jarju said they created the group on 10 November 2014, and started operation in 2015, saying since then, the Association have been supportive to the community.
Executive director of GYIN-Gambia, Mamadou Edrisa Njie said they want to make Gambia green to encourage afforestation, at a time when the country’s forest cover is degrading.
“We are planting these seedlings to expect steady rain fall and to provide wood for the community from the forest. The participation of young people and groups from across the country in the event signifies how important trees are in the environment,” he said.
Mr. Njie said in December, there will be weeding exercise that will see partners remove the grasses from the planted trees to give them the strength to grow fast.
Mama Tamba Jammeh, a participant from North Bank Region, who donated 200 seedlings said Gambia should be self-sufficient in many areas in order to be fully independent.
Mr. Jammeh called on the government and Non-government organizations to empower young people, particularly in the area of agriculture, to enable the country to feed itself from home grown food.
West Coast Region youth coordinator Fabakary Sanneh said youth life is a transition period that starts from community, to ward, region and then to the entire country before getting into international engagement.
Story written by: Ismail Sonko