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Wonder Newsletter

by Caroline Hudicourt, Jim Wike, and Helle Nebelong
January/February 2011
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Article Link: http://www.childcareexchange.com/article/wonder-newsletter/5019703/

Our beautiful, but fragile environment by Caroline Hudicourt

Forty schools with a total of 8,000 students have become an oasis in Gros Morne, northwest of Haiti’s Artibonite Valley, as they contribute to the reforestation of the area. They have bought land â€" at least a half acre per school â€" that they cover with trees to later exploit for the benefit of the school. The children participate to the reforestation of the community, build a source of revenue for their school, and shape their identities as responsible citizens. Sometimes children walk as much as 5 to 6 hours back and forth to get trees to reforest their school’s property.

The project, that we call “friends of trees,” started in 2000 with a group of children ranging in age from 4 to 15 years. With a mentor, they learn to prepare nurseries, compost, and plant and water the trees. The children’s excitement for reforesting led Gaston Jean, who initiated the reforestation endeavor, to involve a network of schools in the activity; the network
now includes 40 schools.

Since 1992, Gaston has been part of a community organization committed to make the Green School Reforestation Project work. He says, “This project helps the children ...

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