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Soweto learners reforesting their future with a vigorous 1000 tree-planting drive

Thobeka Primary School learners were given a taste of the benefits of living in greener environments as P&G, together with Food & Trees For Africa, embarked on a journey of turning 20 schools in selected communities in Gauteng into some of the Province's thriving green grounds.

A jovial group of learners from Thobeka Primary School in Meadowlands, Soweto set in motion a vigorous tree-planting initiative on Friday that will contribute to clean air in South Africa.

Launched In partnership with Food & Trees For Africa (FTFA), the initiative forms part of P&G’s Forest for Good environmental sustainability programme and will be rolled-out at 20 schools and communities around Gauteng in the next months.

To kick-start the initiative, a dedicated team of P&G employees, together with the schoolchildren, planted 50 trees – 30 fruit trees and 20 indigenous plants – at the school on the day (Friday, March 15). A total of 1000 trees will be planted upon complexion of the programme, which will eventually offset an estimated 369 tonnes of carbon dioxide in their lifetime, while increasing biodiversity, and providing access to fresh fruit for local communities.

All the 20 selected schools will receive indigenous shade and fruit trees donated by P&G. “In alignment with the United Nations’ theme of ‘Forest and Innovation,’ we at P&G will be rolling up our sleeves and playing an active role in fighting Carbon emissions. This is part of our ongoing Forest for Good initiative, which aligns with our global Ambition 2030 goals, aimed at improving lives now and for generations to come,” stated Senior VP for SA, Alicia Eggington.

Robyn Hills, Head of Programs at FTFA, added, “Corporate social investment in environmental conservation isn’t just good policy; it’s essential for educating and empowering our youth. By embedding environmental stewardship into the curriculum, protecting indigenous knowledge, and establishing food gardens and tree plantations, we’re seeding the future of South Africa with hope and resilience.”

A purposeful business: the Forest For Good initiative “demonstrates P&G’s commitment to be a force for good in communities where we operate” – Senior HR Director P&G SA Tarryn Allie said.

Addressing hundreds of learners and esteemed partners gathered on the day, P&G South Africa Senior HR Director Tarryn Allie said: “Today we come together not to only celebrate the spirit of the environment, but also the significance of Human Rights Day. It is an honour for P&G to be here with Food & Trees For Africa to demonstrate our commitment to be a force for growth and a force for good in communities where we operate.

“In alignment with the United Nations’s theme ‘Forest and Innovation’ for 2024, we at P&G are stepping up to play our to protecting our planet and our homes. This Forest For Good initiative will see 1 000 trees, the equivalent of one forest being planted across 20 schools in selected communities starting here today.”

Allie also emphasised the significance of small actions such as a “planting a tree” in not only helping protect the environment, but its profound impact on society as a whole. “As we witness the growth of these trees over time, let it serve as a reminder of the growth and progress we can achieve as a society when we work together. Let’s also remember that today is about taking action taste will have an impact on future generations to come.”

Editor's Desk
Editor's Desk
Curated by editor-in-chief, Tankiso Komane, this special collection of articles from the Editor's Desk unpacks topics of the day, including commentary, in-depth analysis and partner content.
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