Zonta Club of Central Tuguegarao launches projects to grow trees in the wake of massive flooding

The Zonta Club of Central Tuguegarao, Philippines, launched its tree-planting projects in collaboration with NAM AY KULTURA SOLANA: Watch and Grow Mga munting kamay para sa kinabukasan ng kalikasan (Little hands for nature's future) and Plant a Tree campaign "The life-giving forests of tomorrow are the seeds in your hands today."

These projects are in response to the massive flooding in Cagayan within the past five years, which reached its peak last year during Typhoon Ulysses. For this reason, the Zonta Club of Central Tuguegarao formed an environment sub-committee within its service committee.

Zonta aims to provide resources to help women and girls access not only education and health care but also economic opportunities and safe living conditions. In this light, the twin projects were conceptualized.

Watch and Grow is for children, who were given talisay (Terminalia catappa/Indian-Almond) seeds to plant and grow in pots. This teaches them the significance of nature preservation and rehabilitation.
It was not difficult to explain because most of them have seen the devastation of the massive flooding last year. More importantly, they are taught the value of family bonding, building worthwhile hobbies and most of all patience. They are not only tasked to plant the talisay seeds, but they will also take care of seeds until they become seedlings ready for transfer. On the next round, they will be given narra (Pterocarpus indicus/Andaman Redwood) seeds so they will know what their national tree looks like as it grows.

The Plant a Tree campaign involves planting fruit-bearing and non-fruit-bearing trees such as calamansi (Citrofortunella microcarpa/Philippine Lime), lemon, cacao and narra. The planting activities will be done in stages as some trees require special areas or locations.

This project will later make economic opportunities for selected women in the community when the cacao trees, calamansi and lemon trees bear fruit. For now, the kids and their families, Zontians and friends from Nam Ay are learning and having fun.