The Lagos State Government has commended the Foundation for A Better Environment (FABE) for promoting upcycling, gardening and environmental sustainability amongst school pupils in the state.
The state Ministries of Education and Environment gave the commendation at its EcoschoolsNG project graduation of participants at Lekki Conservation Centre on Friday in Lagos.
In a welcome address, the permanent secretary of the Environment ministry, Mrs Belinda Odeneye lauded the efforts of the foundation and called for participatory efforts in tackling wastes in the state.
“Our health is linked to the environment; it is when the environment is clean that you will be healthy.
“Let us make that our priority,’’ the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) quotes Oduneye as saying.
She said that it was the desire of the state government to ensure that everyone is involved in the issue of environmental sanitation.
“Everyone produces waste and it will get to a stage that if we do not do anything about it, we will be overwhelmed by waste.
“So what FABE EcoschoolsNG project is doing is our heart desire.
“First gardening in schools, second sorting of waste and recycling them,’’ Odeneye said.
The permanent secretary remarked that through gardening “we are increasing our life span by using waste plastic and tyres around us to plant crops and in turn we are isolating carbon’’.
She noted that there was excess carbon in the air and all our anthropogenic activities increase the carbon footprint in the environment.
“Just gardening can take in the excess carbon in the air,’’ she said.
On her part, Mrs Olusola Shomoye, representing the state Commissioner of Education, Mrs Folashade Adefisayo also appreciated the effort of FABE foundation on sustainable environment.
Adefisayo implored pupils to make good use of the skill acquired at the EcoschoolsNG project.
“I want to express my gladness to what the FABE foundation is doing in conjunction with the Ministry of Environment and our ministry.
“FABE foundation has helped to promote responsible acquisition of skills around conservation, sanitation and environmental sustainability among students in schools.
“I want to challenge our children to visualise the future, a seed has been sown into you by FABE foundation and I enjoin you to make use of this seed.
“I am happy to associate with this foundation that has been working with our young people and women in identifying and exploring sustainable eco-solutions to problems caused by climate change effects,’’ the commissioner said.
The founder of the foundation, Mrs Temitope Okunnu, expressed her gratitude for the success of the project.
Okunnu vowed to continue to promote sustainability practices amongst the school children.
“Today is a reality. In 2020, we got our first grant from the ACT foundation, which made it possible for us to launch out the project.
“We started with only one school, but today, we have reached out to 15 schools; thanks to the grant.
“The children have really been impacted and this is just the beginning.
“The EcoschoolsNG project is a practical environmental education for the children,’’ Okunnu said.
Through the project, she said the pupils could learn hands-on-using environmental sustainability as an integral part of their school lives.
One of the graduating students, Hunkonnu Maria, from Ayedere Ajibola Senior High School Ketu, Lagos District II, said the project taught her positive behavioural attitude by not littering the environment.
“It has also made me to know that waste is not a waste until it is completely wasted.
“Through the project, I can now make ottoman furniture, use tyres to make tables and use pet bottles for Christmas trees,’’ Maria said. (NAN)