A GROUP of young individuals planted recently at least 315 guyabano saplings in the hilly village of Agsungot, Cebu City.

The event was one of the biggest environmental movements in the country that aims to inspire the youth in immersing themselves in charitable activities.

Dubbed as “Empowering People to Unite with Nature,” the Humanist Alliance Philippines International (Hapi) and some Cebuano volunteers joined the 2nd Hapi nationwide tree planting project last Sept. 11.

“Most of our active members are 30 and below (pertaining to age),” said Dominic Malazarte, Cebu chapter head of Hapi Trees Year 2.

Capable

Malazarte said he wants to focus on the youth, as they are the vibrant and most capable population.

Huemer Uy, Hapi Trees Cebu Chapter secretary, stressed the importance of the youth in various activities.

“It’s good to have them because as young as they are, we can inculcate the spirit of humanity among them,” said Uy.

The project was participated by 20 chapters, including Aklan, Baler Aurora, Baguio, Bulacan, Cebu, Manila, Tarlac, Leyte, Bacolod, Davao, Surigao del Norte, Surigao del Sur, Davao del Norte, Compostela Valley, South Cotabato, Butuan, Cagayan de Oro, Cavinti Laguna, Sorsogon, and Polilio Island.

Target

Other chapters like Sorsogon and Bacolod have started a day earlier, and others a day later.

The movement, in cooperation with various government and nongovernment sectors, aims to plant 30,000 to 50,000 indigenous, mangrove and fruit-bearing trees.

Lenie Fernandez, 21, said she felt more alive and honored to have served a purpose at such a young age.

She said that the thought of helping is a ‘nice’ and fulfilling experience.

“We, the youth, should not only think about ourselves, but also think about what’s around us,” Fernandez said.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources Extension Officer Danny Jon Garcia, who attended the event, saw it as a relevant and timely action.

He commended HAPI Trees for initiating the project.

Garcia said that it could help mitigate global warming and prevent landslides.

The fruits of the Guyabano trees will go to the farmers who own or till the land where the saplings are planted.(Kris Emmanuel Andujar, UP Mass Comm student)