The vision of the Learning about Forests is to see an increased level of awareness and knowledge about the key role forests play for sustainable life on our planet. The Programme reflects all the functions forests fulfill for people; cultural, ecological, economical and social. Understanding the balance between those uses is crucial when studying how humans interact with forests. Learning about Forests’ mission is to spread environmental education concerning forests and all their values among school children all around the world, through the action-oriented, participatory and positive methods of the Programme.
The local scenario
With a total forest land cover of 1% and a very high population density one could argue that such a programme would hardly take root in our island. Nevertheless the LEAF programme is being adopted and adapted as a vehicle to change these issues into opportunities.
First and foremost it aims at fostering awareness about the importance and vulnerability of the old forest remnants. Safeguarding and appreciating what we have. Secondly, the programme is trying to instil the love for trees irrespective of the places they occur. With the majority of the population living in urban areas the first encounter with trees is usually in urban spaces. Thirdly and arguably the toughest of them all, is to convince all stakeholders about the importance of making responsible choices. Making them aware that the choices we make each day could compromise the very same forests we rely so much upon and the livelihood of wildlife and indigenous people found therein. Last but not least is creating a general drive and a concerted effort to grow and plant more trees.
For an in-depth guide to the LEAF programme click here.