JCES pupils involved in environmental projects

JCES pupils involved in environmental projects

Youth for Environment in Schools Organization (YES-O) member and now sixth grader Arjon Samantha Namolngo wowed the audience with her comprehensive presentation of Josefa Carino Elementary School’s (JCES) environmental programs during the summit done recently at the Baguio Cultural and Convention Center.

The presenters in the summit are Mayor Benjamin Magalong, City Environment and Parks Management Office (CEPMO) head Atty. Rhenan Diwas, City Planning and Development Office coordinator Archt. Donna Rillera-Tabangin, WWRRDEC head Helen Madumba and Guisad Valley National High School (GVNHS) student Bryan Bert Ganaden, among other environmentalists.   

With confidence and credence, the young Namolngo spoke of JCES’ environmental programs, which she said would be a long-lasting and worthy legacy of protection and conservation of the ecological community. The next generations should experience a safe and livable planet, through the efforts of today’s denizens, she said.

She emphasized that today’s youth must be instilled with an environmentally-conscious mindset. As leaders, the youth “should lead in fighting climate change and promoting a clean environment.”

Namolngo reported that the JCES populace participate in environmental protection through several doable programs, among them an awareness campaign, face-to-face and virtual symposia, solid waste management and segregation activities. Tree planting, urban gardening and clean-up drives are also part of JCES’ environmental protection scheme.

The school has sponsored an awareness campaign and symposia on environmental issues with the theme, “Makakalikasan,” which focused on the causes and effects of global warming, the ozone layer and the greenhouse effect. Speakers expounded on living and non-living things’ interaction and the need for balance between providing for men while caring for nature.

On the ground, a virtual symposium was conducted for water and electricity conservation, basically for the school and home. The activity is in compliance with a Department of Education (Dep-Ed) mandate on the promotion of cost-efficient and alternative approaches to water and energy conservation. It is a privilege to have both, while millions of Filipinos suffer from water scarcity and lack or inadequate access to electricity. Conservation of energy and water, however, should not be to the detriment of personal hygiene practices as to Covid-19 prevention, it was emphasized in the forum.

For solid waste management, Namolngo reported that the JCES family launched the “Bayanihan sa kalinisan sa paaralan at pamayanan,” where proper segregation of biodegradable and non-biodegradable wastes was discussed and demonstrated to the young populace. The “Basura mo, Pakikinabangan ko,” scheme promoted the 4Rs: refuse, reduce, reuse and recycle for waste management; both in the school, home and the community. The program’s advantage to the environment was thoroughly explained. 

Tree planting in the immediate environs is also one of the school’s ecological programs, Namolngo pointed out. The JCES pupils were instructed to plant, water and care for the seedlings, conduct ring weeding and even trimming at times for higher rate of tree survival.

Environmentalists invited to the school’s planting activities, and teachers, explained the importance of trees: Carbon Dioxide absorption, release of Oxygen for human and animal respiration, water reservoir, noise and pollution barrier, provider of shelter material, food and other products, home for other organisms, among others.       

To help address food security, pupils with their families are encouraged to engage in urban gardening in their community’s available spaces; Namolngo further said.

JCES pupils, together with volunteers also participated in the “Barangay ko, Linis ko,” clean-up drive after the May 9 elections at Upper Rock Quarry barangay where campaign materials were removed for the city trash trucks to pick up and dispose of accordingly. 

The YES-O where Namolngo and her fellow pupils are members, is a school organization mandated by Dep-Ed order 93, series of 2011; for the implementation of environmental-friendly programs.

The young Namolngo, is fully supported in all environmental endeavors by father Allan Namolngo, a member of the Baguio City Police Office.

Namolngo participated in the first environmental summit wherein the second series is awaited for more reports and presentations. – JGF