One of Gothong Southern Foundation’s (GSF) fundamental responsibility is to find ways to Conserve Nature. The most recent Tree planting activity in Barangay Sunog, Balamban, Cebu is an integral project to realize this. Tree planting is essential not only to mitigate the effects of global climate change but to preserve the natural environment for future generations as well.
The Gothong Southern Group of Companies, represented by its 40 employee volunteers from its four business units, traversed the winding road to Barangay Sunog in the early hours of the morning last July 21, 2018. The crisp and cool mountain air invigorated the volunteers and pumped them up for the hard toil ahead.
The group met up with the barangay captain and the rest of the community volunteers at Cambagocboc Elementary School, which also happens to be one of GSF’s adopted schools. Barangay Captain Jose Pepito gave a brief orientation on the importance of the activity, the types of seedlings to be planted and how to ensure that the seedlings are planted accordingly.
After Captain Pepito’s talk, all 70 volunteers – a mix of the employees from Gothong Southern Group of Companies, the Cambagocboc Elementary School Teachers, the Barangay Sunog elected officials and their barangay tanods - made their way up the 1-hectare land allotted for the activity. There were 1,000 indigenous forest and fruit-bearing tree seedlings planted that morning composed of Lawaan, Guyabano, Cinnamon and Cacao. These were specifically chosen by the barangay officials themselves for the purpose of making these trees a source of livelihood for the local people when these saplings are fully-grown.
GSF’s responsibility does not end after the seedlings have been sown on the ground. The seedlings’ development will be monitored quarterly as the success of the program can only be truly measured if the trees grow to maturity. For their part, the Cambagocboc Elementary students will start planting seeds that will be nurtured into seedlings for the next tree planting activity.
The morning ended with a humble partaking of lunch. GSF’s simple way of expressing gratitude for all the volunteers who sweated it out the whole morning.
GSF is also thankful to the barangay officials for turning the tree planting program into something the whole community can take part in and be proud of.