10-year-old girl in Kenya crowned to spearhead scouts’ climate action agenda

A young champion of environmental conservation has emerged in Kenya, as Alice Wanjiru, a ten-year-old student at Brookhouse School, was honored as the spearhead of the Scouts’ climate action agenda during the World Environment Day celebrations in Embu County on June 6, 2024.

Wanjiru’s passion for environmental preservation knows no bounds. Through her dedicated efforts and the support of the Green Hummingbird Foundation, she is actively involved in growing a forest of over 5,000 trees in Nairobi’s Ruai area, with aspirations to expand this to 10 million trees by 2032.

Concerned about the impact of climate change on children, Wanjiru emphasizes the urgency of action. She believes that everyone, regardless of age, must play a role in addressing climate change to prevent further tragedies like the recent floods that claimed lives and disrupted communities.

To realize her ambitious vision, Wanjiru’s foundation has devised innovative initiatives tailored to engage children, such as planting trees on birthdays. However, such endeavors require substantial human resources, prompting collaboration with the Kenya Scouts Association, boasting a membership of over 2.5 million, to amplify Wanjiru’s efforts.

Recognizing her dedication, the Scouts Association has bestowed upon her the title of Scouts Climate Action Ambassador, entrusting her with the responsibility of leading fellow scouts in environmental conservation efforts.

Her crowning ceremony, attended by dignitaries including Environment Cabinet Secretary Soipan Tuya, underscores the importance of youth engagement in environmental stewardship. Wanjiru is slated to address over 8,000 delegates at the upcoming Worldwide Scouts’ Conference in Sussex, United Kingdom, further amplifying her message on climate action.

Aligned with the Scouts’ initiatives to clean water bodies and conserve marine ecosystems, Wanjiru is actively involved in habitat conservation, organizing beach clean-up activities in Kilifi County.

Moreover, her foundation operates tree nurseries, with plans to establish one at her school to facilitate broader participation in tree planting initiatives. The Kenya Forest Service has pledged support by providing seedlings and establishing nurseries to empower more youth to join the cause.

Echoing Wanjiru’s call to action, Environment Cabinet Secretary Tuya emphasizes the imperative of collective efforts in combating climate change, pledging governmental support for climate action champions like Wanjiru.

Nancy Muiruri, Project Manager at the Green Hummingbird Foundation, underscores the role of mentorship and support in fostering a positive environmental attitude among children. She urges adults to actively engage in nurturing the next generation of environmental stewards, envisioning a future where sustainability is ingrained in society’s ethos.