Saving the Environment

Nature needs YOU!

Betty S.

What is this all about?

The situations in Kenya started in the early 1970s. On visits to Nyeri, Kenya, a woman named Wangari Maathai noticed that things weren't what they used to be. Streams and watersheds had dried up, and the Sahara desert was expanding south. The forests had turned into farms and plantations. The ground was infertile and dry. Maathai wanted to stop this. She loved trees, and thought that by planting more trees, she could make the land fertile again, and bring back the forest. But it would take a lot of determined people to make that happen. The is how the Green Belt Movement got started.
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Kenyan Flag

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Wangari Maathai planting a tree

What is the Greenbelt Movement?

The Greenbelt Movement is the organization that Maathai started because of Kenya’s ecological decline. Its goal is to plant more trees in Kenya, to make the environment there cleaner and prettier. The Greenbelt Movement is now run by Maathai's sister, Wanjira Maathai.

A quote from Maathai: "A tree has a personality." She believes trees can give people hope; They can encourage people to make better decisions.

Maathai’s group plants seedlings in little bags so they can then plant them in larger areas such as reforestation places around Kenya. But if you decide to help by planting a tree in your backyard, that is good, too. The Green Belt Movement is an organization that anyone can help with. Start by planting a tree.

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Nandi Flame Tree

Wangari Maathai & The Green Belt Movement

Video about Wangari Maathai

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Who was Wangari Maathai?

Wangari Maathai started the Greenbelt Movement. She was born on April 1st, 1940 and died on September 25th, 2011. Maathai went to college in Kenya and in the U.S., receiving a master’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh and a Ph.D from the University of Nairobi. She was the first woman in East and Central Africa to get a Ph.D. Smart woman, huh? Maathai believed trees help not only the environment, but people as well. Since she was a young girl, she had loved trees and believed they were one of the most important things on Earth.

Not only was Maathai an environmentalist, but she was also a feminist. She had faith in women, and believed they were just as great as men, if not greater. In 2004, she was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Wangari Maathai was a truly great woman.

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Wangari Maathai

How can I help?

There are many ways to help the Greenbelt Movement. The easiest way would be to plant a tree near your home. A harder way would be to plant a tree in a reforestation ground, a place where people plant more trees in order to protect the environment. You could also help the Greenbelt Movement specifically. You could donate money, or visit the Greenbelt Movement website. You could plant a tree in a reforestation ground in Kenya. That is the best way to help. Keep in mind that nature needs you. Trees might be more important than you think, so go out and help the Earth!
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Red=Kenya

Taking Root The Vision of Wangari Maathai

Video about Wangari Maathai

keep the environment green

Bibliography

"The Green Belt Movement : The Story of Wangari Maathai." YES! Magazine. Web. 14 Apr. 2016.

"Wangari Maathai." Britannica School. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc., 2016. Web. 14 Apr. 2016.