La Trinidad Benguet – To advocate and inculcate the importance of environmental protection and conservation of the ecosystem to the students and in support to the Anti-Dengue Campaign of the government, Eastern La Trinidad National High School (ELTNHS) Beckel with their Senior High School students, Performing Arts Club and Science club officers conducted a Weeding and Tree Planting Activity last July 20 and 25 respectively at the Shilan Communal Forest along Beckel-Shilan Road.
This year’s Tree planting activity is part of the Regreening Program Project of ELTNHS and it is in collaboration with Barangay Beckel, Barangay Shilan and DENR-CENRO. The school adopted an estimated area of 1,200 square meters of the Shilan Communal Forest to comply with the Adopt-A-Forest Program of the Local Government Units. In a meeting, the Community Reforestation and Regreening Program Coordinator Ronilyn P. Eddio, Community Outreach Program Coordinator Eleanor A. Antonio and MAPEH Coordinator Vivian E. Butz with the Punong Barangays of Beckel and Shilan Gregorio T. Antonio and Jeffrey C. Maslag respectively collaborated for the identification of the Communal Forest to be adopted by the school.
Before the students were disperse for the activity, the Forest Extension Officer of DENR-CENRO Baguio in the person of Godfrey A. Matnao conducted an orientation and demonstration to the students on the proper handling of planting the seedlings. “Our purpose in planting is to survive and not to die”, added Matnao. Aside from the students, the activity was also participated by the Local Government Unit-Barangay Beckel headed by Punong Barangay Gregorio T. Antonio, Barangay Tanods and the Forest Ranger of the Communal Forest of Barangay Shilan in the person of Macario Toyan. There were three Hundred twenty (320) Benguet Pine seedlings that were planted in the area and it was sponsored by CENRO Baguio City thru the OIC CENR Officer Rainer D. Balbuena.
Prior to the activity, the school had been link in taking care of the command forest located at Lamut National Road along Beckel, La Trinidad Benguet with an area of 10,000 square meters last July 2017. And on September 22 of the same year, Five Hundred (500) seedlings of Benguet Pine and Caliandra which was donated by HEDCOR Inc., was planted along Busi-Lamut-Marlboro Road and at the Barangay Beckel Communal Forest. These trees however were visited and were weeded last July 20.
Moreover, the Tree planting activity is in compliance with the School Improvement Plan and Schools Division Office of Benguet Memorandum No.127s.2018 (Conduct of Tree Planting activities in the District and School Level in observance of the Philippine Environmental Month and Arbor Day, CY 2018).It was however stated in the Division memorandum that the activity is in consonance with Executive Order No.26 s. 2012 requiring all government personnel to plant at least 10 seedlings every year, all school heads and teachers are hereby directed to conduct tree planting activity either school-based or district-based.
BY VIVIAN E. BUTZ