Spirit Rosenberg from Great.com interviewed Haribon as part of their ‘Great.com Talks With…’ podcast. This series is an antidote to negative news stories that aims to shed light on organizations and experts whose work is making a positive impact on the world.
In this interview, we discussed the importance of managing our natural resources. Rainforests around the world are receding. In the 1900s, around 70% of the country was covered in forest. Now it’s less than 23%. The Narra Tree – a once abundant national symbol – is an endangered species.
We explained that using photos and visuals of our unique and endangered wildlife to raise awareness on habitat loss can be effective. Their images strike an emotional chord with people. In addition to asking how to save the animals themselves, we must also ask how to save their habitats.
How are communities affected by habitat conservation?
Many people don’t realize how resources we rely on come directly from natural habitats. In Manila, over 90 percent of the water comes from the Sierra Madre mountain range. But this forest habitat is at risk of continued forest loss.
Even though there are restrictions in place to protect forests from loggers, the legal framework is complicated and corruption rife. Many policies come from the colonial period, which focus on extraction of resources rather than conservation. It’s important to protect these forests for oxygen production, carbon absorption and the water table. We shouldn’t take fresh air and water for granted!
How Haribon, and people like you, work to help our forests.
We have reached over 60,000 students throughout the country. We teach them about native flora such as the Banaba Tree as part of the Forest Friends campaign and run an educational roadshow through our Biodiversity on Wheels program.
Women Go is a campaign funded by the EU to include more women to become active conservationists. It has also engaged the community through poetry; one reads “Magkaiba man ang kababaihan noon at ngayon” (Women then were different to now). Learn more about the Women Go project here.
How can you get involved?
You can donate directly through the Adopt-a-seedling program. For Php350 (about USD$7) your tree will be planted and maintained by local communities. So far, Haribon has planted almost 1 million trees together with people and networks from around the country .
Conservation is a global effort, so you can also support a conservation organization that is closer to home. After all, what happens in one part of the world is going to affect everywhere else.
To listen to the whole interview and gain access to over 50 episodes of inspiring talks, visit Great.com.
Great.com is an organization that is changing the way people think about charity, development, and organizations. They’re leading the next generation of charitable giving with their completely remote and radically transparent team. Find out more.