SEEDBALLS

Innovative school children are helping in the fight against deforestation by planting seeds using slingshots.

The initiative by the SeedBalls Kenya company, which makes and sells seedballs globally, is meant to encourage children have slingshot competitions using charcoal covered seeds instead of stones.

About 2 million seedballs have been planted in Kenya alone in the past year and a half in what has been called “guerrilla gardening.”

The company recycles coal dust collected around Nairobi and buys the seeds from the Kenya Forest Research Institute.

The government has recognized the threat from deforestation and earlier on in the year imposed a temporary logging ban that was extended in May by another six months.

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Similarly, the Green Initiative Challenge, a 10-year program that aims at enrolling 1,000 schools to green a total of 460 acres with 324,300 tree seedlings as well as 113,956 fruit seedlings is working towards increasing Kenya’s forest cover from the current 7 per cent to the 10 per cent recommended by UN Environment.

The project enlists the help of primary school pupils and aims to spread a culture of reforestation and conservation of natural resources.

The pupils are rewarded for growing small woodlots and forests around their school area as part of the region’s conservation effort, as well as for their own commercial and domestic use.

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