Wessanen UK has entered into a partnership with the International Tree Foundation (ITF) to support a series of community-led forestry and education projects in Africa.
The new partnership will see Wessanen become the first corporate sponsor of ITF’s new 20 Million Trees appeal, which aims to plant 20 million trees in and around Kenya’s highland forests by 2024, when the ITF will celebrate its centenary.
In addition, Wessanen will fund a number of projects under ITF’s Sustainable Community Forestry programme, which will help local African communities to better manage their natural resources, improving food security and enhancing local livelihoods through the sustainable use of trees. One of the first projects to benefit from Wessanen’s support will be the Alpha Women Empowerment Initiative in Uganda, where ITF is helping a local women’s group to graft and plant mango trees in a remote and impoverished area.
The third strand of the partnership will see Wessanen fund an extension of ITF’s new Tree Power education programme in the UK.
Altogether, in the first year of the partnership, Wessanen’s involvement is expected to support the planting of around 200,000 trees.
Patrick Cairns, CEO of Wessanen UK, said: “At Wessanen, we’re passionate about protecting our planet for current and future generations. The International Tree Foundation is a marvellous organisation, which shares our belief in the importance of community-led sustainability, where local people are empowered to respect and make the most of their natural environment. This is a partnership for a natural, organic, ethical and sustainable future.”
IFT chief executive Andy Egan added: “We’re delighted to have Wessanen UK on board as a key corporate partner, and the first major company to back our 20 Million Trees centenary campaign. Their support will help us change the livelihoods of hundreds of communities and thousands of individuals, whilst teaching new generations about the vital importance of trees and forests to our natural world.”
Wessanen is the owner of brands such as Clipper Tea, Mrs Crimble’s and Whole Earth.
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