LEAF and Natural Forests

LEAF & Natural Forests

The vision of LEAF is to see an increased awareness and knowledge on the key functions forest play for a sustainable life on earth. 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 programme aims at involving a child in practical forestry education to appreciate the crucial forests functions developing responsiveness and proactively create positive change in the environment. Stimulating activities that will help students reach a higher degree of environmental maturity irrespective of age, stage and previous experience

Planting of trees is conducted as a part of the ordinary education. A number of schools in Uganda are joining the tree planting campaign. The planting activities are done as a part of environmental activities concerning the key role forests plays in the climate change debate in schools.

The programme reflects on all the functions forests fulfill for people; cultural, ecological, economical and social. Multiple-use of forests is a reality all over the world. Understanding the balance between those uses is crucial when studying how humans interact with forests. The planting of trees is the planting of ideas. "By starting with the simple act of planting a tree, we give hope to ourselves and to future generations". - Wangari Maathai

The LEAF programme encourages environmental education through awareness raising among students, teachers and the wider community.

The LEAF program aligns itself with Education for Sustainable Development (ESD), the Global Action Programme (GAP) and the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The LEAF programme is operated in a thematic manner. Participating countries encourage schools to work on the current LEAF theme. The programme looks at all the functions of forests.

All forest types from tropical to boreal, offer a huge diversity of habitats for plants, animals and micro-organisms. However, these biologically rich systems are increasingly threatened, largely as a result of human activity. We encourage investigation of local and national forests, discover why they are so important biologically and investigate ways of helping to protect them. We also encourage learning about the ecological web, knowledge and understanding of ecological interplay between single species, within different ecosystems and within bigger areas with many specific structures leading to a better understanding of nature's processes.

Forests are by far the greatest carbon dioxide cleanser we have on Earth. We encourage people to examine forests as carbon storage facilities and the importance of reforestation. To promote activities that has a goal of investigating local conditions. Work on activities connected to the use of wood as an energy source, carbon storage, and a building material. A number of tree species have been planted in respect to the need of increasing carbon sinks in Uganda and more especially in all participating schools in South Western and Central regions of the country. The students have visited the natural forest reserves in Uganda to appreciate the role played by natural forests in modifying our climate and to appreciate the different indigenous tree species as compared to exotic species they are commonly exposed to.