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Mweka Seminar

Because of our Internet research we have been able to open up new venues for the project. Last October we saw notice on the US AID website about a conference to be held at the Mweka College of Wildlife Management, a leading institution in African conservation. The conference theme was "Wildlife Management in the New Millennium" and the keynote speaker was Jane Goodall. Sebastian was able to give a talk at this conference about mpingo conservation, explaining the work of the ABCP in tree planting and education. Jane Goodall requested an interview with Sebastian after the conference and they spoke about their respective educational programs. Jane Goodall has a program called "Roots and Shoots" which facilitates youth conservation activities, similar to Sebastian’s Mpingo Clubs.

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Sebastian points out one of the thriving Mpingo saplings to his son Michael at the Moshi
Mpingo Plot earlier this year.

 

"Treat the Earth well. It was not given to you by your parents. It was loaned to you by your children."

– Kenyan Proverb

 

UNEP Eco-Schools Seminar

Another contact came through our involvement in a discussion group on the Mountain Forum (http://www.mtnforum.org). We were contacted by a representative from UNEP, the United Nations Environmental Program, who invited Sebastian to attend a seminar in Mombasa, Kenya.

The theme of the seminar was "Environmental Action Learning Co-ordination Seminar for Countries of the Eastern African Sub-region — The Eco-school approach." This is part of an initiative launched by UNEP in August 1999 called The Environmental Action Learning (EAL) program for Africa. Its basic idea is to involve local schools in designing and implementing programs which address the specific needs of their communities in mitigating environmental degradation. The program is highly action-oriented and emphasizes micro-projects, run jointly by schools and the community, such as land and water conservation, solid waste management, sanitation and environmental health.

Sebastian was able to offer input from his own experiences and show part of a video that we had put together about his work. Other participants requested copies of the video to show in their local regions. Sebastian is currently working with 5 other representatives from Tanzania to draw up an action plan for the whole country and apply for funding from UNEP for implementation. He will serve as co-ordinator of the Northern Region.

BP & Charles Mmbaga

Special thanks are again due to British Petroleum-Tanzania, for a fuel donation to the ABCP for the second year in a row. Fuel is very expensive in Tanzania and BP’s assistance has been very helpful for Sebastian’s travels to present educational programs and in transporting seedlings and nursery equipment.

On May 29 an article entitled “Chuwa, the Man Behind the Mpingo Project” was published in The Guardian, a leading Dar es Salaam newspaper. It covered recent developments in Sebastian’s environmental work and was written by Charles Mmbaga, Public Relations Officer for British Petroleum, who has been very helpful in his support of the work of the ABCP over the years.

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Members of a new Mpingo Club founded by Sebastian in the Kilimanjaro Region as one of the projects funded by the Lindbergh Grant project pose with Mt. Kilimanjaro visible in the background.

Kilimanjaro Environmental Conservation Management Trust Fund

Several years ago, Terry Harnwell and John Parkin, in a desire to publicize and bring together information about conservation efforts in Africa, designed an ambitious website, www.africanconservation.com, and included an overview of the work the ABCP is doing in Africa. Last year Terry visited Sebastian in Tanzania, where he gave her a tour of the Moshi Mpingo Plot and told her about his conservation work in Kilimanjaro Region.

In May Terry and John completed a website, free of charge, for the Kilimanjaro Environmental Conservation Management Trust Fund, of which Sebastian is the chairman. This organization is funded by political and business leaders in the Kilimanjaro district for the purpose of instituting conservation activities in the area. If you wish to read about the work of the Fund, please see: www.kilimanjarotrust.org.

Counselor of Kibosho East

In October of 2000 Sebastian was elected to political office as counselor of his district of Kibosho East. In this position he is serving as a member of the financial committee. He writes, "This is a very good post because it gives me a say in the local and central government. I have organized 5 village meetings talking about developments like needing to build a government secondary school in our area, needing to build a bridge for the benefit of 3 villages in the area, encouraging families to have sanitary toilets and bathrooms, and at the same time helping our environment with tree planting campaigns. We are also helping people

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ABCP Website maintained by James E. Harris, 2000.
Last revised 21 Apr 2008.