Surrounded! - Civilization is encroaching on Nairobi National Park in Kenya Just beyond the open expanse of Nairobi National Park rise the tall, gleaming buildings of Nairobi itself. Just on the other side of the park’s electrified fence line looms a row of new apartment buildings. In the distance, smoky plumes of large industries color the air.
The park itself, the first of all of Kenya’s national parks, was created 65 years ago, on Christmas Eve, 1946.
The future of this park will undoubtedly be mixed. Like most of Kenya’s parks, the Nairobi preserve is under pressure from the country’s growing population and the accompanying need for settlement land on the southern side. In 1948, the first year Nairobi’s population was counted. 118,976 people lived in the capital; today, that number has soared to 3 million. Kenya’s 42 million citizens are expected to balloon to greater numbers in the coming years.
Tree Planting Day
The Nairobi Greenline project envisages to grow 300,000 trees between Cheetah Gate in Athi River and the Carnivore Restaurant through the initiative which has so far received overwhelming public support. Sponsors believe that once they participate in fencing the park, they will help in the conservation of the ecosystem in which they operate as neighbours of the National Park. When all the trees have grown to maturity, the Greenline will go regional. Another 750,000 trees will be planted in other locations beyond.
Corporate planting days
On Saturday June 5th, the World Environment Day, like minded organizations joined hands to plant trees and made a “green” statement through a 5,000 strong Human chain inside the Park. These individuals were all wearing Greenline t-shirts.
We have had many corporate tree planting days - sometimes 3 in one month. These have served to educate the participants on the need to plant trees, how to plant trees, and how to nurture trees so they can grow to maturity.
We have also hosted schools, colleges and universities at the Nairobi Greenline. These scholars come in buses and learn the reason to plant trees, and how to plant trees. Their energy is amazing, and have been known to plant 25 tree seedlings each, over a period of 2 hours. These corporate and schools planting days have hosted over 19,000 individuals
Value of corporate/school participation
The individuals learn about the Nairobi park, it wonderful bio-diversity, and its uniqueness in the world. They learn about the tree species that we are planting on the Greenline, and why we selected this species – soil type, climatic conditions, indigenous to the park They learn how to plant a tree so it survives, and how to nurture planted trees to maturity They participate in tree planting, and add their signature to the Greenline Contact Wanja Kimani, the Nairobi Greenline co-ordinator to get involved