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Rwandan children campaign against climate change
Detail: The Rwanda Rural Rehabilitation Initiative (RWARRI) rewarded primary and secondary school pupils in Kayonza for sensitising local communities on climate change. The prizes included cash, and scholastic materials such as books, pens, pencils and school bags. The students formed environmental clubs at their respective schools and used theatre, songs and poems to campaign against environmental degradation in Kayonza. Other pupils used art, drawings and poems indicating the causes, effects and solutions to climatic change.

John Bideri, the Director of RWARRI stressed the need for creating climate change awareness among residents: "School children were involved in the campaign to sensitize Rwandans on climate change since last year. By use of simple messages, songs, drama and poems, the children explained to residents the causes of climate change and possible measures to minimise it".

Anitha Umutesi, the district vice Mayor for social affairs emphasized that the involvement of children in environmental campaign would save the country from environmental hazards. "Being aware of the importance of protecting the environment at an early stage gives me confidence of a bright future; free from upcoming hazards due to climate changes," Umutesi said. She appealed to the students to continue the awareness campaign especially during their holidays to enlighten their parents about the dangers of environmental degradation. Human activities like tree cutting and burning that are common in villages are among the causes of climate change. Umutesi urged pupils to be role models in their villages by planting at least five trees around their homes and schools.
Source: Based on a story by Edward Mwesigye, “Children Awarded for Environmental Campaign”, New Times (Kigali), February 8, 2010.
Date: February 10 2010