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Deutsche Welle supports Plant-for-the-Planet

10.06.2009

Germany's youngest climate campaigner envisions greener future


Felix says he hopes the Plant for the Planet project will take root

An 11-year-old boy is at the heart of an initiative that will see children plant 1 million trees planted across Germany by the end of the year.

Felix Finkbeiner might look like an ordinary, shy 11-year.old, but in the space of two years he has achieved an extraordinary feat. By 2010, he will have inspired thousands of children from over 500 schools around Germany to plant 1 million trees.

Felix said he decided to let children do the talking the UN campaign to plant a billion trees, which began in 2003. Felix said he was surprised by the knock-on effect he had by focusing on children.

"I never thought that when I started this project it would go so fast, to plant all those trees and that it would spread to other countries as well," he said.


Felix with fellow ambassors of the 'Plant for the Planet' scheme

Felix has motivated thousands of kids to plant trees

Just over two years ago, Felix was asked to do a school presentation on climate change. During his research, he came across the work of Nobel peace prize winner Wangari Maathai, whose Green Belt Movement saw 30 million trees planted in 12 African countries in as many years. If Wangari Maathai could achieve all that, Felix said, then surely the students in Germany could manage planting a million trees.

He now travels the country giving presentations to like-minded fellow students. Children attending these meetings gather all the information they need to take part in the tree planting program and to spread the word in their own schools.

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