Hakha Youths Planted over 190 New Trees on Mt Rung
29 June 2012: A group of youths in Hakha, Chin State of Burma, planted about 195 new trees on Mount Rung as part of their voluntary community programmes for environmental protection and reforestation on 23 June 2012.
The Hakha Youth Fellowship (HYF) organized the Saturday planting activities of fast-growing trees including cherries in an effort to help improve sustainability of water sources.
“Last Friday, some youths went out to collect new seedlings of hriang trees from the nearby fields. We managed to plant 15 cherries, 60 hriangs and 120 khadawhmis. We just wanted to say thanks to all participants for their contributions in this community activity,” said the HYF committee.
The committee extended their gratitude in the HYF Authawng newsletter to the Peneil Baptist Church for providing lunch on the planting day.
Chin State has long faced environmental problems mainly resulted from the existing practices of an age-old shifting cultivation and depletion of forests for the needs of firewood.
Reports in 2011 and 2012 by the UN agencies such as WFP (World Food Program) and OCHA (Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs) highlighted the destructive farming system and depletion of water sources through cutting down trees as part of reasons for humanitarian crisis in Burma’s poorest state.
The rapid expansion of military presence across Chin State which required construction and renovation of more than 50 military camps with woods has also been described as an attribute to the cause of deforestation, according to CHRO (Chin Human Rights Organization).
Local people, especially youths, in Hakha had used Mount Rung as their social recreational meeting place before the construction of military bases in the 1990s.
Hakha, the capital of Chin State, is situated at 6120 feet above sea level on the hillside of Mount Rung, which is about 7,543 feet (2,299 m) high.
Reporting by Thawng Zel Thang