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Arbour Day 2022 – We are Generation Restoration

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(Photos courtesy the Department of Environment)

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By Department of Environment

Arbour Day is here again! The annual Plant Fair and Climate Fest event is held yearly on the last Thursday of November by the Department of Environment (DoE). The DoE is scheduled to distribute thousands of various fruit trees to members of the public, whilst also engaging and educating the public on important environmental issues, such as ecosystem restoration and climate change.

The theme for this year’s activities is “We are Generation Restoration” highlighting this generation’s need to be actively involved in restoring the world’s environment. The overarching theme for Arbour Month is “Ride the climate wave” to emphasise our role in having an impactful contribution to the climate change movement.

The first Arbour Day was started to highlight the importance of trees for our environment and climate resilience, using tree planting as a form of celebration. This cumulative tree planting activity can be traced back to 1805. Presently, Arbour Day is recognised in several countries around the world, including right here in Antigua and Barbuda where Arbour Day has been marked in this special way for the last 17 years by the DoE. We have planted thousands of trees across Antigua and Barbuda and distributed even more trees, significantly adding to the effort to improve health, hygiene, environment, and resilience to climate change.

Today, Arbour Day 2022, the DoE will have a variety of fruit trees available for a $5 donation, which will go towards providing biodegradable plant bags for other tree planting efforts by the DoE. Other plants and flowers will also be on display and available for purchase from other vendors.

At the heart of the effort to plant trees and reforest Antigua and Barbuda is a need to restore our ecosystems and fight climate change. Science has proven that tree planting is critical to restoring our environment. In fact, in research done by the Swiss University ETH Zurich, it was estimated that with an aggressive worldwide tree planting programme, two thirds of all human emissions that contribute to climate change could be removed from the atmosphere by trees.

As Antigua and Barbuda and other small island states are becoming increasingly vulnerable to the effects of climate change, the DoE is making efforts to mitigate and also adapt to climate change with major projects. Some of these projects are the Global Environment Facility supported Sustainable Low Emission Island Mobility (SLIM) Project, the Green Climate Fund supported Enhanced Direct Access (EDA) Project, and the National Adaptation Plan (NAP) Project.

In addition to the opportunity to get a variety of trees and plants, there are other reasons for the public to come out to Arbour Day. The general public will get a chance to get their own mosquito trap at the Arbour Day Climate fest by purchasing plants, by attending presentations that will be made during the day, or by participating in any of various question and answer activities. These traps were secured by the DoE on behalf of several projects such as the EDA and NAP Projects, as well as the Special Climate Change Fund (SCCF) Project, the Fourth National Communication (4NC) Project, and the Adaptation Fund (AF) Project, to reduce mosquitos using environmentally safe and non-chemical methods of control, as well as to educate the public on the dangers of illegal dumping and how to protect our waterways.

Food, drinks and entertainment will also be provided at Arbour Day to make this an enjoyable, fun day for everyone to enjoy.

So, to everyone, Happy Arbour Day! Join us at the DoE’s lawn, just above the Botanical Gardens at #1 Victoria Drive, as we celebrate Generation Restoration.

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Antigua & Barbuda

Children and elderly among those to benefit from new volunteer venture

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The organisation has been lending a hand to some of the nation’s vulnerable residents (Photos contributed)

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A string of local causes have benefited from a new volunteer programme operating in Antigua and Barbuda.

SkyTigerCares was formed from outsourcing and offshoring consulting firm SkyTiger, based at Canada Place, St John’s.

A food drive for the Fiennes Institute, supported by SkyTiger staff, secured $1,500 worth of food and personal care items. In addition to the care packages, $5,000 was also donated to the Master of Fiennes, Walton Edwards.

In July, the philanthropic organisation supported the West Indies Sail Heritage Foundation by donating $5,000 to the tall ship race event in the Netherlands.

“In addition to financial assistance, our very own employee and aspiring sailor J-maiah Louisor was able to participate in the event,” a release from SkyTiger said. “In his words, it was a dream come true and he felt privileged and honoured to be selected for this once-in-a-lifetime event.”

The organisation also helped local schoolchildren last summer by issuing 105 gift certificates to staff members with children between the ages of three and 17.

The volunteer programme focuses on four pillars of corporate social responsibility – environmental, ethical, philanthropic, and economic.

“We embrace diversity, inclusion, social awareness, volunteering, education, eco-friendly practices, and acts of service,” the release added.

“At SkyTiger, one of our top priorities is to be a good corporate citizen. We want to create an environment that recognises the importance of giving back.”

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Messi scores, Argentina beats Australia 2-1 at World Cup

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Haitian police are fed up!!

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A high-ranking police officer says gangs in Haiti are making their lives very difficult and they are challenged in executing their functions.

Over the past few months, Haitian gangsters have seized at least three police vehicles, which includes two armored ones, in a wave of gang violence that has left several law enforcement officers dead.

A police source, told HCNN that an armored vehicle and several police weapons were hijacked and are still in the hands of the criminals who are still using them to fight rival gangs.

“As a police commissioner, I feel embarrassed and guilty, because I am among those who are supposed to make sure that gang violence is quelled and that security is guaranteed,” he said

He says there have been numerous times he considered resigning but has been advised against it.

One gang leader, a former policeman known as Crisla, has claimed responsibility for the seizure of the vehicles.

A spokesman for the Haitian National Police Union, Lionel Lazare, said at least 50 policemen have been shot dead, since the beginning of the year.

Police commissioner, in charge of the police academy, 50-year-old Harington Rigaud, was among the victims who were shot in the head, outside his office, on November 25.

His vehicle was also taken by the criminals.



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