Recently the United Nations acknowledged the work of ABSWP in the «1 Million Trees for Peace» project in Edo State, Nigeria, by including this project as part of their United Nations International Year of Forest 2011, an award which has made all those associated with ABSWP very proud.
The Project Manager and his team have already cleared 22 hectares of deforested land this year, ready for the planting of at least
16,000 seedlings of the indigenous African teak species. Pegs have been positioned to mark where each seedling is to be planted. All this was done entirely by hand by workers from the community of Irhue, using only basic hand tools. This has brought much-needed work and prosperity to the area. Planting will start as soon as there is a constant rainfall.
At a meeting in Irhue in May, one of the community leaders remembered the forests in the early 1930s when it was deciduous and very thick. As a result of illegal exploitation, the trees had since disappeared. He was now so happy to see the «1 Million
Trees for Peace» project re-planting the trees: so God’s gift of nature was returning. Another leader thanked ABSWP for bringing employment to his community and said that his daughter was again going to school. Books donated by ABSWP in 2008 were also a great help. Another elder said that his son had returned home, since he could now find gainful employment in the «1 Million Trees for Peace» project. The community leaders were fully committed to supporting the «1 Million Trees for Peace» project. One leader was making daily prayers for the success of the project.
The lead that ABSWP is taking in the «1 Million Trees for Peace» project has already resulted in an improvement in the environment: many animals, including antelope, are now seen returning to the re-planted forests, their natural habitat.