By Jason B. Neola
NAGA CITY --- The local government unit here has been pursuing a series of activities since last week as it joins the month-long celebration of National Environmental Awareness Month.
The green projects are being undertaken in partnership with Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) members in the city’s 27 barangays and the Youth for Environment in Schools (Yes-O), an organization of students whose co-curricular are recognized by and in line with the Department of Education and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
Students taking up the National Service Training Program (NSTP) at the City College of Naga (CCN) are also participating in the conduct of the activities.
The nationwide celebration which is mandated by RA 9512 provides for the promotion of environmental awareness through environmental education that encompasses environmental concepts and principles, environmental laws, the state of international and local environment, local environmental best practices, the threats of environmental degradation and its impact on human well-being, the responsibility of the citizenry to the environment and the value of conservation, protection and rehabilitation of natural resources and the environment.
Mayor John Bongat said the celebration kicked off with the conduct of massive clean-up drive along the perimeters of all public schools in the city. Scheduled to be held every Friday and Saturday of the month, the activity is obtaining participation from students, SKs, barangay volunteers, CCN students, and the Parents and Teachers Associations.
Last weekend, a massive tree planting activity was staged along the river banks of Barangay Balatas and Barangay Cararayan. The activity, which was aimed to nurture the flora and fauna biosphere and eventually help to improve the water and soil quality in the area, was joined by public school teachers, students, and SK officials.
In the morning of November 15, a group of Yes-O and SK officials will learn about creative processing of upcycles scraps under the auspices of Karaw craft ventures, which were recycled into artisanal products.
In the afternoon, the youth officials in the barangays along with the nursing students of CCN will gather for an environmental awareness summit at the mall ground of Robinsons Place Naga where they will discuss multifaceted approaches to address issues on pollution, and health and sanitation together with key resource persons.
In the entire month of November, the City ENRO along with public school teachers will engage in the establishment of school parks and “Gulayan sa Paaralan,” to help the young ones acquire outdoor learning experiences and develop their sense of responsibility. The program is expected to raise the level of awareness of the children on the significance of growing organic vegetables that can also be used in the feeding program of the school. The city government is extending garden tools and seedlings for this project.
Students will be taught to produce Bokashi balls that allow microorganisms to help improve the river’s ecosystem by way of neutralizing the harmful substances in the body of water to be able to preserve its cleanliness.
Capping the celebration is the conduct of awarding rites for best environmental practices and programs implemented by schools and barangays which will be held in time for the 21st anniversary of the partnership between the city government and its allies called the vanguards of environment in December 2018.