• Sustainable Development

From acorns to trees in the soil

Students from Agrupamento de Escolas de Rio Novo do Príncipe de Cacia planted around 1200 trees

© Helder Berenguer, João Simões

On February 19th, students from Agrupamento de Escolas de Rio Novo do Príncipe de Cacia planted around 1200 trees in São Jacinto Natural Reserve, and we were there to help them. This doesn’t get past the little ones. “Semear o Futuro” was born because children were worried. Wanting to do something, but not knowing what.

It's impossible to ignore the gravity of the state of preservation and conservation of our forests when there are days when clouds of smoke fall upon our cities while seas of flames consume forests, homes and lives. 

We started by going to a school, then to all of the other primary schools in the city of Aveiro, to talk about native species, the forest, what are its threats, pollution and pollinators. We talked about what we could do, and we made seed bombs, a mix of clay and soil with seeds inside. This year we were able to do this during the Environment Day’s celebrations that occurred at the City’s Park in Aveiro, in the ObservaRia and BioRace in Estarreja, and in the Agrupamento de Escolas de Rio Novo do Príncipe de Cacia.

The seed bombs flew out of the children’s hands onto the soil of the São Jacinto Natural Reserve to help develop vegetation cover that combats desertification and the spread of invasive species and increase the quality and success of our forests and those that depend on them. But these children aren’t ones to stand still either, they’re hard workers and are focused on their mission. They sowed and cared for 1274 trees until it was time for them to leave for a new home. They also planted european oak (Quercus robur), cork oak (Quercus suber), stone pine (Pinus pinea), strawberry trees (Arbustus unedo), and butcher’s broom (Ruscus aculeatus).

But don’t think young people are the only ones with eyes on a greener future, because the citizens of Aveiro know they have an important role to play and did not disappoint. During “Green Friday”, they made purchases in local shops that became 766 trees to be planted and were present when it was time to pick up the hoe.

This project goes beyond what's done during the seed bombs’ workshops, during the “Green Friday” campaign, and beyond its contribution to the São Jacinto Reserve, because this awakens something in people.

Realizing that their time and energy and impact multiples in children and that it awakens in them the will to do more leads all of us to want to do a little more. It awakens in others what makes us want to be Guardians of Nature.

Semear o Futuro” and “Green Friday” are part of the project “Plantar o Futuro”. “Semear o Futuro” has the support of Sementes de Portugal and Argex. “Green Friday” is co-organized by  Agrupamento de Escolas de Novo Príncipe - Cacia, CORDA and Município de Aveiro. They have the support of Ecomobile - Aluguer de Automóveis. They also have the support of IPDJ - Instituto Português do Desporto e Juventude, I.P. and Programa Voluntariado Jovem para a Natureza e Florestas.

Liane Carvalho

20-02-2020