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Planting a Legacy this Mandela Day – in Mvezo and Beyond – 2631 Trees and Counting

The 18th of July , Mandela Day, saw Food & Trees for Africa (FTFA) and their partners planting trees across four provinces in South Africa. The highlight of the day was planting trees at Mandela’s place of birth, Mvezo in the Eastern Cape. President Cyril Ramaphosa and previous South African Presidents, together with various dignitaries, planted fever trees outside homestead in which Mandela was born.

Mandela Day is a time for all South Africans to celebrate the great man Madiba was, and to work towards the common goals of shelter, food and education for all. The theme of this centenary year was, “Be the Legacy.” “At Food & Trees for Africa, we encourage sponsors to think beyond 67 minutes, and consider what legacy their actions on Mandela Day will leave behind,” comments Emily Jones, Trees and Carbon programme Manager at Food & Trees for Africa. “By partnering with an NGO such as FTFA, with robust assessment, monitoring and evaluation criteria, you can ensure that the impact of your efforts will be felt in the long term.”

This is the beginning of a time of intensive planting at FTFA, where at least 2631 trees will be planted in honor of Mandela. We encouraged all individuals, organisations and businesses to “Plant a Legacy” with us – and they have stepped up to the challenge.

Stefanutti Stocks will be planting 1740 trees at three locations across South Africa. Shukumani Primary School, in Tembisa, Gauteng will receive 180 fruit and shade trees, and fencing to protect the trees. 375 local homes in Tembisa will receive one fruit and one indigenous shade tree each. Kwamanzini Primary School, near Pinetown, KwaZulu-Natal will receive 30 fruit and shade trees, and the local community will receive a total of 750 trees. Finally, St Joseph’s Home R C Primary School in Montana, Cape Town will receive 30 trees as well as a water tank to ensure that trees will be well watered despite the persistent drought.

Konica Minolta South Africa (KMSA), a division of Bidvest Office (Pty) Ltd, have committed to plant 500 trees in the Eastern Cape, on the ‘KMSA Mandela Route’. Trees will be planted at sites in which Mandela spent time, such as Qunu Junior Secondary, where the great man spent some of his time in school. This is a part of an ongoing partnership, where KMSA plants trees to offset their carbon footprint. Through this donation 7 schools and community institutions will receive trees.

Through these activities, 29 schools and community centres will be matched with trees, 927 tonnes of Carbon Dioxide will be offset and 30 Community Educators will be trained as climate and tree planting champions in their communities, and receive short term employment. FTFA would like to thank all sponsors and community partners who came on board this Mandela Day and helped to ensure that a legacy was planted.

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