About the Project
The Tropical Climate Smart Forestry Schools are informal schools for broadly targeted students (children and youth), intended to educate them of the importance of tropical rainforests to climate change mitigation. The schools were initiated by the Indonesian Green Action Forum (IGAF), and were supported by the UN agencies and Indonesia government. The schools have persisted for four years with more than seven formal schools involving approximately 250 students.
Generally, the establishment of the schools is in the line with ESD (Education for Sustainable Development), notably climate change and ecology education. There are three objectives of the schools: to conserve Indonesia’s tropical rainforests contributing to climate change mitigation, to raise public awareness about the effects of climate change, and solutions, and to actualize smart green initiatives and activities on the ground. We collaborate with teachers and volunteers to manage the schools’ activities. The informal school curricula consist of several tropical forest-based activities, including forestry & climate change education, social forestry, field observatory, degraded forest rehabilitation, tree planting, and forest conservation campaigns.
The project, which is similar to extracurricular programs, is conducted every Saturday and Sunday. Forestry and climate change education are taught to students using the Forestry and Climate Change YUNGA UNFAO Challenge Badge. Such captivating books and badges are tremendously popular with both students and teachers.
Social forestry and field observatory are two indispensable actions for ascertaining the roles of rainforests in climate change mitigation. We usually engage students to implement an agroforestry system as a practical solution, and persuade students to visit CIFOR (Center for International Forestry Research). For rehabilitating degraded and abandoned lands, we always use free seedlings from the Department of Forestry, Ministry of Environment and Forestry Indonesia. There are three types of seedlings utilized: fast growing, multipurpose, and local tree species. These trees must be preliminary examined to avoid the spreading of invasive tree species (IAS). In addition, this year we initiated a great action, 2000 tree planting!, which was aimed to accelerate a million tree planting program of Ministry of Environment and Forestry.
Beyond planting in abandoned and degraded lands, we also collaborate with local farmers to plant the trees alongside their agricultural and river lands. The forest conservation campaign is committed via an online and offline platform. Social media used are for instance Facebook, twitter, blogs, etc. The campaign is positively versatile to advance environmental awareness of societies about the importance of tropical rainforests to climate change mitigation, biodiversity enhancement, and carbon sequestration. Sustainability of the project must be taken into account. Financial and non-financial support, management, monitoring and evaluation, commitment and responsibility of the executors are the core of sustainability achievement. Previously, similar schools have been reported by UNESCO at this link. For the details of our forestry schools’ activities, you can visit our Fanpage.