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Mama Rachel Ruto launches environmental award to empower learners

The First Lady of the Republic of Kenya, Mama Rachel Ruto, has officially launched the First Lady Environmental Award.

The initiative aims to empower Kenyan learners to become environmental stewards through creativity, innovation and active participation in the preservation and conservation of their natural environment.

The launch event, held at KICC in Nairobi, celebrated the potential of Kenyan learners to play a vital role in environmental conservation.

Mama Rachel Ruto stressed the importance of nurturing young minds to become conscious environmental stewards. She paid tribute to educators, recognising their noble task of shaping young lives and encouraging curiosity and creativity in learners.

Addressing the audience, the First Lady outlined the key objectives of the First Lady Environmental Award, which include

  1. Creative expression: Encouraging students to use their talents to create content that raises awareness and inspires action on environmental issues.
  2. Tree Planting: Encouraging tree planting in schools, homes and communities to increase Kenya’s forest cover and create sustainable sources of food and income.
  3. Cleanliness: Advocating for a clean environment by discouraging littering and promoting hygiene practices.

Mama Rachel Ruto emphasised the vital role that young Kenyans play in securing the future of the nation.

She urged the learners to commit to protecting their environment and to actively participate in tree planting initiatives. She noted that fruit trees can be an excellent addition, providing not only environmental benefits, but also a source of food and income.

The First Lady expressed her gratitude to the students and schools who participated in the competition to name the award and design its logo and slogan. Several outstanding entries were recognised and awarded during the ceremony.

The scope of the award extends to over 89,000 public and private primary and secondary schools in all 47 counties of Kenya. The aim is to create a generation of environmentally conscious citizens who actively address climate change and environmental degradation.

The First Lady emphasised the importance of giving young people a platform to express their ideas and solutions for tackling climate change.

The initiative aims to actively involve students in tree planting, promote environmental awareness and align with the Competency-Based Curriculum (CBC).

The initiative holds the promise of nurturing a generation of passionate and sustainable environmental warriors who will make a lasting impact on Kenya and the planet.

Speaking at the launch, Dorcas Gachagua, wife of the Deputy President of the Republic of Kenya, urged the young people to dedicate their energies to protecting the environment. “We must develop indigenous solutions to address the climate crisis that threatens our existence on this planet,” she said.

Education Cabinet Secretary Machogu said the competition was in line with the hands-on learning envisaged in the Competence-Based Curriculum (CBC). He added that the award would raise awareness of climate change and promote the creative talents of learners.

Also present at the launch were Permanent Secretaries; Eng Festus Ngeno – Climate Change and Forestry, Veronica Nduva – Ministry of Gender and Affirmative Action, Dr Belio Kipsang – Basic Education, Vice Chancellors; Prof Stephen Kiama – University of Nairobi, Prof Penina Aloo – Maasai Mara University, Prof Isaac Kosgey – Moi University and Mercy Wahome, CEO – Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Service.