The Northern Regional office of the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) has embarked on a tree planting exercise at the Yumba Special School in Tamale in the Northern Region as part of the activities earmarked to commemorate this year’s Emancipation Day celebration.
The regional office procured 100 seedlings such as Mahogany, Nim, Teak, Cassia, Papoa, Terminilia and Indian Harmon from the Forestry Commission and planted all over the premises of the school in an organized manner to provide a conducive environment for academic work as well beautify the school.
The exercise was carried out across the country under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture in collaboration GTA to help plant more trees to promote a green and healthy nation. Emancipation Day Celebration is an international event observed on August 1, every year to celebrate the resistance and liberation of Africans in the Diaspora against enslavement and human rights violation.
The national celebration is on the theme ‘Our Heritage, Our Strength’, with a sub-theme: ‘Leveraging Our Resilience; Black Lives Matter”. Beyond the Return’. It is a follow-up to the successful Year of Return Ghana 2019 campaign which commemorated the 400th Anniversary of the arrival of the first recorded enslaved Africans in Jamestown Virginia in 1619.
The landmark campaign also celebrated the resilience of the African over the past 400 years and welcomed all people of African origin to return to Africa especially Ghana.
Speaking after the exercise, the Regional Manager for GTA, Alhaji Hakeem Ismail said, the tree planting was part of GTA commitment to replace the lost trees to mitigate climate change.
According to him, trees are a crucial factor to human existence not only because they produced food but also because they play an important role in the carbon cycle and that tree filter water bodies, provide habitat to terrestrial biodiversity, absorb harmful carbon from the atmosphere, and are serve for medicinal purposes.
“We believe that if every Ghanaian decides to plant and grow one tree, the country would have 20 million trees to reverse the forest and institutions depletion. This is why we procured the seedlings and grew them at the school and it is our belief that this tree-planting project will inspire Ghanaians and other organisations to start thinking about the planet and how they can also contribute,” he added.
He explained that the event was designed to help Africans to reconnect and rededicate themselves to the lessons of history. He appealed to other organisations, religious bodies, communities and social groups to extend support to other institutions to grow more trees in the environment.
The Headmaster of the school, Ishmael Tutu Brempong, commended GTA for choosing the school to plant the trees and that it would go a long way to protect the lives of the children. He said children with special needs tend to face a host of discriminatory social practices because of negative cultural attitudes that limit their integration into society.
He said the school sought to provide vocational training for these children to equip them with skills that will help integrate them into their communities. He appealed to the public to assist the government to improve education at the special schools for a better future.