“Let me contribute to the reforestation of the Mount Kilimanjaro to lower climate change and give a sustainable future for Aasir’s community.”
WHAT'S ALL ABOUT?
It's an honor to let you all know that I have been selected as one of the 20 young leaders around the world to join the Reforestation Expedition at Mt.Kilimanjaro, led by famous explorer and the first man in history to have walked to both poles, Sir Robert Swan O.B.E! This expedition focuses on climate change and on solutions to tackle this challenge in Tanzania, home of the Lion King.
WHO AM I?
I"m a 24 year old passionate young environmentalist from Malaysia. Currently pursuing my Bachelor’s degree in Media and Communication at National University of Malaysia. I have a rich background in public speaking and debates which improvised my communication skills and very well known for my participation in National level Public speaking competitions in Malaysia.
I was also one of the delegates selected to join Youth Ecosperity Dialogue at Singapore. Recently I finished my exchange program at National University of Singapore and got an opportunity to appear in NUS News article for my success story on how I made it as a scholarship student from a gardener.
I was also selected as a representative by NUS to give speech at Young Asian Leaders Forum at Singapore. Apart from that I am also a young film maker who seeks to convey important messages to my community through my short films.
I want to use my background and this expedition to make a difference to our environment, our community and the next generation. Most people don't know the effect they're having on our environment, which is why I’d like to raise awareness, to reduce our negative impact.
Mt. Kilimanjaro is one of the many wonders of Africa. It is, in fact, its highest peak. All that visit the mountain leave in awe of the precious forest area surrounding it, its size, and the snow-covered peak. Even Ernest Hemingway wrote about the glaciers. Unfortunately, because of two factors Kilimanjaro is in danger: deforestation and climate change.
Here are some quick maths to help you visualize the problem surrounding Mount Kilimanjaro:
For perspective: a single tree is estimated to produce a daily supply of oxygen for ten people.
With a 10 ft by 10 ft spacing in between trees (which in a rainforest is generous as they usually tend to have a dense volume of trees, we will plant them on a 4ft by 4 ft spacing) there will be 436 trees per acre. That’s 2,053 acres lost every year, so that’s 895,108 trees lost per year.
Forest fires are caused involuntarily during the dry seasons in Tanzania. However, the dry season becomes harsher due to the lack of trees to promote rainfall. Not enough rainfall makes the ecosystem vulnerable to the African sun.
Because of deforestation, animals are immensely affected. The disappearance of trees causes droughts that leave animals to starve.
Animals lose their habitats, and as they are displaced they are forced into human territory. Interactions among the two usually result in negative outcomes. On top of all this, there is another victim that lives a little higher up than the rainforest but depends vastly on it.
THE GLACIERS ARE MELTING!
Mount Kilimanjaro’s Glaciers are a sight to marvel at. Ernest Hemingway described them in The Snows of Kilimanjaro. Tourists help boost Tanzania’s economy to visit them repeatedly each year and they nourish the Lumi and Pangani rivers that provide water to Kenya and Pangani town respectively. The glaciers are a vital part of the geography as well as the sustainability of the people of the region.
Every year, 5% of the glaciers disappear from the top of the mountain, and since 1912, 85% of them have vanished. This is one of the most evident examples of the impact of climate change. If ever there is anyone who does not believe in the harmful effects of excessive carbon emissions and the damage caused by greenhouse gases, let them know that Mount Kilimanjaro cries glacier tears.
HOW DO TREES HELP?
Trees not only promote rainfall, but they are a vital part of the water cycle and they act as a natural refrigeration mechanism that keeps the weather cool; as we all know, trees absorb C02: the main culprit in climate change. Furthermore, their roots hold the soil tightly under them to prevent erosion. Without them Mount Kilimanjaro would shrink.
After all of this, how can I not say that this mission is my responsibility. I was presented with this opportunity, and I feel it would be irresponsible not to participate in the global effort to combat climate change. That is why it is my dream. And that is why I need your help to make it a reality.
WHO IS GUIDING THE EXPEDITION?
The organisation spearheading this effort is 2041ClimateForce. The founder of this organisation is renowned explorer and environmental activist Robert Swan, who in 1986 covered 1,400 kilometres to complete the longest unassisted march in history and reached the South Pole. In 1989 he completed the same feat on the North Pole. Now being the first man in history to walk to both poles.
More recently, in 2017, along with his son Barney, travelled to the south pole relying solely on renewable energy for the first time in history. The reason for the tenacity that Robert and his son show through their perilous adventures is to raise awareness to the environmental threats that plague the world we live in.
There will also be Jeff Bonaldi, a renowned entrepreneur as well as an explorer, founder of The Explorer's Passage. Here's his words of support:
These are the men leading the expedition, and also with them is Jane Goodall. Jane is perhaps one of the most influential names in the world of environmental activism in modern times. Her vast work with chimpanzees allowed us to have a totally new perspective into how animals think, live and feel.
Her activism work has earned her numerous awards, including a French Légion d’honneur and the Medal of Tanzania.
Her organisation: Roots and Shoots, works closely to ClimateForce in the Mount Kilimanjaro Reforestation effort. Last year, 2,041 trees were planted in the area surrounding the mountain. In 2020 the plan is to plant 5000.
LET'S COME TOGETHER!
As perfect as it would be to be able to always have funds available for projects like these, the world has different priorities at the moment. There are many issues that require attention and it’s hard to lend a hand when so many are reaching out for help. But the planet needs us. Climate change has no borders, neither should our interest.
I also want to give a voice to this place, and these people, the Chaga community that need our help desperately such as Aasir. My journey does not stop once I'm come back from Tanzania, I will continue to spread awareness and to keep people active on situations like these all over the world.
I will collect the funds of this campaign to directly pay for my participation in the ClimateForce 2020 Kilimanjaro expedition which will take place in February 2020 for 10 days.
Although my crowdfunding target is $3,000– the total amount I need to raise for the expedition is $8,000. I'm trying to secure corporate sponsors for the remainder
By helping me exceed the crowdfunding target and reaching the entire amount will guarantee my place on this expedition and help educate people on environmental matters.
Expedition fee: will be paid to the expedition organiser, The Explorer's Passage.
Flight: Two-way round trip from Kuala Lumpur to Tanzania.
Travel insurance / medical: Takaful travel insurance and other medical expenses such as vaccines.
Gears: Hiking gears and since Kilimanjaro is high in altitude, some gears are necessary and must be in good quality for safe precautions.
Emergency: for emergency purposes at Tanzania for 11 days. Anything can hapen anytime. It's better to be prepared for everything.
Kits for kids: I'm already there why just stop at preserving our mother nature while we can help those kids in need with school kits.
Single tent supplement: tent and camps along the way to the mount summit.
Dreams Hunter Program's commission*: It’s a coaching program (10% commission) which accompanies teams of selected candidates for environmental and/or social expeditions to finance their project/participation thanks to crowdfunding methods.