* CMO has today partnered FDH Financial Holdings which is an institution that is like-minded on issues of environmental justice
* Oftentimes, many groups or individuals engage in similar exercises of planting trees but most of the seedlings die due to lack of care
* As FDH, we are supporting a very worthy and important cause — nurturing a truly sustainable environment for the country at large
* Under our sustainability program FDH Cares, we are committed to plant 1 million trees by 2024
* Since 2021 we have championed the planting of so far 200,000 trees through staff members, partners and customers
By Duncan Mlanjira
The Catholic Men Organization (CMO) — an arm of the Catholic Churches of the Archdiocese of Blantyre — observes that the growing wanton cutting down of trees for charcoal burning, home wood fuel and brick burning is regrettable that it is mostly men who are guilty of the worrisome practices.
And compounding the situation, the men do not have any sense of responsibility in replacing the trees they have destroyed that is contributing towards negative climate change.
This was observed by CMO chairperson Martin Chiwaya on Wednesday when FDH Financial Holdings presented a donation of the first 10,000 tree seedlings for the Archdiocese’s 2022 Forestry Season to be planted in 10 parishes.
Chiwaya said the wanton cutting down of trees compelled CMO to start engaging men in planting and caring of trees to fulfill it objective of their grouping which aims at ‘inculcating in Catholic men the implosion to care for nature and replenish that which has been depleted’.
“CMO has today entered into a working relationship with FDH Financial Holdings which is an institution that is like-minded on issues of environmental justice.
“The tree seedlings we have received today will be planted in bare lands that CMO identified in districts which as within the jurisdiction of the Archdiocese of Blantyre.
“Oftentimes, many groups or individuals engage in similar exercises of planting trees but most of the seedlings die due to lack of care. Our executive has therefore requested its membership from all the parishes that are beneficiaries to form subcommittees which will specifically deal with caring of the trees so that we do not lose them.”
On top of that CMO has endeavoured to empower young men, especially school leavers, by training them through a multi-purpose skills development centre they need to construct in various vocational skills such as carpentry & joinery, brick laying, electrical installation, plumbing and many others as an alternative source of income to reduces cases of cutting trees for charcoal making and brick burning.
“CMO believes that by empowering men and youths with such skills, “it benefit them as it will provide them with a source of employment which will in turn contribute towards the development of their families as well as that of the country.
“CMO is therefore looking for sponsors who can have this dream of establishing a skills development centre in the Archdiocese of Blantyre realised.”
In his vote of thanks, Blantyre Archidiocese Vicar General, Monsignor Boniface Tamani expressed his “sincere gratitude and appreciation to management of FDH Financial Holdings for the donation” and hoped that “this is going to be an annual event and indeed the beginning of many good things to come”.
“It is the dream of the Archdiocese of Blantyre to replenish trees in our parishes and indeed for the whole country — not just for ourselves but for the generation to come.
“This generosity from FDH Financial Holdings is worth to be commendable. We have rich people and organisations out there but it takes a thoughtful heart to share their worth with others for the good of the nation.
“We must remember that taking care of the environment we are living in is a God-given task. We have that responsibility from God who gave us the dominion of the earth.
“So we must use it but we also leave it even better for the next generation. Pope Francis calls of men of goodwill — Catholics and non-Catholics — to take care of the environment and FDH Financial Holdings is responding to that call.”
In his remarks, FDH Financial Holdings Chief Executive Officer — who was accompanied by head of marketing & communication, Levie Nkunika; head of administration & operations, Mwiza Madanitsa; head of legal and company secretary Juliano Kanyongolo and other senior members of staff — said “the church is a key player and leader in the community in Malawi and all over the world”.
“The Catholic Church itself is found across Malawi and across the world and is involved in various key development activities in health education and other community advancement activities.
“We, as FDH, are therefore more than honoured to be here this morning with His Grace and the church at large supporting a very worthy and important cause — nurturing a truly sustainable environment for the country at large.
“Under our sustainability program FDH Cares, FDH Group committed to plant 1 million trees by 2024 and since 2021 we have championed the planting of so far 200,000 trees through our staff members, partners, customers and various stakeholders and initiatives in alignment with the Malawi 2063 and the UN Sustainable Development Goals.”
He said they were responding to CMO’s appeal to support the reforestation project, thus felt more than pleased to assist with a total of 30,000 seedlings of Bluegum, M’mbawa and Keysha.
“FDH Group recognizes the importance of a green environment and as a responsible corporate citizen is has reinforced its commitment to champion a sustainable green environment that will foster the development of the country and nurture a resilient country against various environmental and economic forces.
“FDH Group would like applaud His Grace for leading the way by championing a sustainable environment mentality in the church and in the community and to not relent in its various development works that benefit the community.”
He quoted Dr. Edward O. Wilson, who said ‘Nature holds the key to our aesthetic, intellectual, cognitive and even spiritual satisfaction’ and thus “let us take full responsibility and harmonise our efforts build a Malawi that is truly sustainable for the current and future generations because our growth depends on it”.
In November last year, FDH Bank partnered with Malawi Forestry Department in the environmental and natural resource conservation by adopting Chingale Hills Forest in Zomba through a sponsorship of K10 million per annum for its sustainability drive.
The adoption of Chingale Hills forest came at the backdrop of various initiatives that FDH Bank Plc engages in under the banner ‘Our Environment’ sustainability pillar, which include committing to plant 1 million trees by 2024.
This commitment will be done through FDH Bank’s staff members, partners, customers and various stakeholders in support of the World Economic Forum global restorative initiative to grow, restore and conserve 1 trillion trees around the world to restore biodiversity and help fight climate change.
The bank also manages a ‘Be Green Smart Tree Planting’ season initiative in which its staff members plant and nurture 5 trees each in partnerships with NGOs and also sponsors Green Café Program on Zodiak Broadcasting Station.
FDH Bank also sponsors annual Green Awards for best media reporting on environmental conservation facilitated by Association of Environmental Journalists.
For this forestry season, FDH has also donated tree seedlings to Blantyre Synod’s Church of Central Africa Presbyterian (CCAP); the Wildlife & Environmental Society of Malawi (WESM) and Mary’s Meals — the primary school feeding programme across the country — whose 10,000 tree seedlings was to inculcate tree conservation culture on young learners.
3 thoughts on “Archdiocese of Blantyre inculcating in Catholic men the impulsion to care for nature through tree replacement; As FDH Financial Holdings donates 30,000 seedlings”
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