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Illustration of three young Black girls planting a tree

Hope and Resilience in Lubumbashi

Back in January 2020, Congo Environnement et Nature (CEN) received a Changemaker grant from the North American Association for Environmental Education (NAAEE) to support the environmental education and reforestation project in 40 schools across Lubumbashi. We educated children and planted trees. We evaluated the whole process by using a questionnaire and an interview. The results were satisfying.

80% of the children answered correctly and later on, 50% of them brought up fruit seeds for our organization and 30% planted trees at home.

A grid of five photos. From top left, clockwise, a woman smiles while a child next to her holds up a plant. In the next photo, a group of people applaud as a man hands a box to a young girl. In the next photo, a group of students walk while holding young trees. In the photo above that, a group of four students and an adult hold planters while facing the camera. In the last photo, a young student kneels on the ground to plant.

This project has led us to extend our nursery for more efficiency and effectiveness in local tree plantings.

Our nursery is located in an area with constant water shortages. The water shortage was the leading cause of initiating a water catchment project back in September–October 2021 up to December 2021. However, the borehole was not operating due to a lack of electricity. 

We urgently needed a generator.

With the help of the Project NightFall, we were able to purchase a generator in January 2022 and then proceeded with the project. 

The whole neighborhood was pleased and overjoyed as we shared the water for the nursery with the neighborhood as well. Currently, we’ve been helping more than 50 families with clean water on a daily basis.

So far we’ve transplanted 3,000 trees from our small nursery, and we’ve planted 5,000 local fruit seeds (ALBIZYA, PARINARI CURATELIFOLIA, and STRYCHNOS). We’re aiming to increase the plantation of trees to 50,000 to 100,000 a year.

Read more about this story on CEN's blog.

A grid of three photos. From left to right, a photo of a young man hands a growing plant to a young boy. The second photo shows a group of women and children gathered around a brick well with buckets for water. In the last photo, a man places seeds in two trenches.