WWF launches ‘Cities for Forests’ campaign in India

Posted on August, 04 2011

WWF-India has launched a project to inspire young people and city dwellers to reconnect with their forests and find out how they can help to conserve them.  
New Delhi, 30 July: WWF-India has launched a project to inspire young people and city dwellers to reconnect with their forests and find out how they can help to conserve them.

On July 30, students and young professionals across the country joined WWF-India to celebrate the launch of the Cities for Forests campaign.

In New Delhi supporters held placards and banners for passers by, tied banners and signage on trees along the road and reached out to thousands who visit shopping malls over weekends. Similar launch events were also organized in Bangalore, Kolkata, Shimla, Dehradun, Baroda, and smaller towns like Mandla, Valsad, and Ramnagar.

The campaign is being launched during the International Year of Forests as declared by the United Nations.

Simultaneously, WWF is running its Living Forests Campaign which combines cutting edge science, new perspectives from partners and decades of on-the-ground experience to help address the challenge of saving the world's forests.

Discovering India’s forests

The Cities for Forests campaign focuses on raising awareness about the essential link between forests and human well-being, with a main focus on changing the perception of youth all over the country.

It calls upon people to go out and discover the forests that support their cities and share their findings on the interactive platform citiesforforests.in. Here you can upload stories, pictures, presentations, and videos about individual observations of the city’s forests and green spaces.

Introducing the campaign, Mr. Ravi Singh, Secretary General & CEO, WWF-India, said, “City dwellers often forget their inter-dependence on forests - fresh air, water, recreational activity, sources of wilderness and imagination. 'Cities for Forests', with its unique call to action, aims to build environment awareness amongst citizenry, to enlarge the support and understanding for the protection of India's forests and her natural heritage.”

Forest Champions

The Cities for Forests campaign aims to make individuals, schools and institutions 'Forest Champions' of their cities by educating others about their forests.

WWF-India plans to organize events across various cities during the Wildlife Week in October, where some of the best findings shared by individuals or groups on citiesforforests.in will be presented to politicians, government advisors and environment journalists, to push for better protection of urban forests and reach out to those who can bring about change.

In particular this year as part of the Living Forests Campaign, WWF is asking the public, policymakers, and businesses to support the goal of Zero Net Deforestation by 2020.

You can find out about WWF’s groundbreaking Living Forest Report here. The second chapter of the report will be released in September.
Enthusiastic volunteers at the launch of the Cities for Forests campaign
© WWF-India
A military cadet tying ‘lungs’ on a tree, highlighting their role in providing fresh air to city dwellers.
© WWF-India
Volunteers and supporters form a human chain along Nelson Mandela Marg in New Delhi holding up placards with conservation messages for passing cars.
© WWF-India
A rally organized by school students to launch the campaign in Haldwani and Kaladhungi, Uttarakhand.
© WWF-India