One Person Can Make A Difference. Gashaw Tahir Plants 1 Million Trees.
Do you ever sometimes wonder how one person’s actions, like say yours, could possibly make a difference in this enormously complex and vast world that we share with over 6.8 billion people? Well, here is a short story of how one Ethiopian-born American citizen made a huge difference.
A few years ago Gashaw Tahir traveled back to his homeland and was blown away by the dramatic changes that had taken place since he was last there. Mountains had been deforested and as a result erosion was everywhere. Rivers that depended on the moisture contained in the lush forests were drying up and climate change was only intensifying the situation. Tahir knew that something had to be done and quickly. “ My ultimate vision is making Africa green again.” he said. That inspires me, touches me, moves me into action.”
He set out with one goal in mind: to plant 1 million trees. He brought together a few young people from his hometown and began to plant seedlings in small temporary pots. More and more people became inspired until he had hundreds working together planting seedlings side by side. After the first year he had 500, 000 seedlings in pots and told the government, “I need land to plant these”. The government gave him 11, 000 acres so Tahir hired 450 young people and began planting.
Now there are over 1 million trees on those 11,000 acres and Tahir notes that the erosion has slowed, native grasses are beginning to grow, wild animals are coming back, and the climate and the environment have been helped. “You can do a lot! I planted over 1 million trees, hired over 450 young people, and made a difference…that’s what I have done. If one man can do this, with collaboration, we can make a huge difference.”