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Public-private partnerships pave the way for climate action in sub-Saharan Africa.

A beautiful story is developing in the centre of Sub-Saharan Africa. It is a tale of cooperation and group effort—one that emphasizes the critical function of public-private partnerships in bringing about significant change. Among the champions of this narrative is NCBA Bank Kenya, a trailblazing bank committed to making a tangible difference in Kenya’s Bungoma County and beyond.

On the hopeful occasion of World Environment Day, which is celebrated on June 5th every year, NCBA embarked on a mission: to donate and plant over 20,000 trees in Bungoma County, where the environmental concern resonates strongly. This noble endeavour marked a milestone in NCBA’s “Change the Story” campaign—an ambitious response to the urgent need for reforestation and climate resilience.

United by a shared vision, NCBA partnered with institutions such as Kibabii University, the Kenya Forest Service (KFS), the Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Climate Change, Kenya Forestry Research Institute (KEFRI), National Environment Management Authority (NEMA), and the Ushiriki Wema Foundation. Together, they orchestrated a symphony of collaboration, intertwining their expertise and resources to nurture a sustainable and prosperous future for communities and the environment alike.

Under the watchful eyes of distinguished guests, including the Governor of Bungoma County, H.E. Kenneth Lusaka, and H.E. Tessie Musalia, Spouse to the Prime Cabinet Secretary, NCBA planted 4,000 trees at Kibabii University—a symbol of their unwavering commitment to environmental goals. A wave of optimism was created by this act of solidarity, motivating countless people to join the movement and bring about great change.

The significance of public-private partnerships in the climate change discussion cannot be overstated. These alliances symbolise the perfect fusion of strength and ingenuity. Governments bring forth their authority and policy frameworks, while businesses contribute their financial resources, technical prowess, innovation, and entrepreneurial spirit. Together, they create a formidable force capable of tackling the complex challenges posed by climate change.

In Sub-Saharan Africa, where climate change intertwines with social and economic development, public-private partnerships take on a special significance. They possess the transformative power to foster inclusive growth, empower local communities, and safeguard the well-being of future generations. By aligning their efforts with the Sustainable Development Goals, these partnerships transcend traditional boundaries, encompassing environmental sustainability, social equity, and economic prosperity.

The tree planting initiative in Bungoma County holds a deeper meaning. For years, the region has thrived on its natural resources, but the toll of deforestation, particularly driven by the Webuye Pan Paper industry, has taken a heavy toll on the environment. The partnership between NCBA and the community stands as a testament to their shared resolve to protect the natural heritage that sustains them.

As the world rallied together under the banner of World Environment Day, the theme of #BeatPlasticPollution resonates strongly. It serves as a powerful reminder that our individual actions matter and now is the time to accelerate our efforts and transition to a circular economy. With public-private partnerships leading the way, Sub-Saharan Africa, including countries like Kenya, stands poised to overcome the climate challenges that lie ahead.

As we all go out on our common path to build resilience, sustainability, and a future where the peaceful coexistence of people and nature is valued, let this collaborative attitude triumph.

Featured image: H.E Kenneth Lusaka, Governor Bungoma County planting the first of his pledged trees during the NCBA tree planting campaign at Kibabii University to commemorate World Environment Day.

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Vicki Wangui
Vicki Wangui
Vicki Wangui is a believer in all things beautiful. A believer in spreading information in regards to environmental awareness. A believer in sharing all that is good in Kenya's natural world. A believer in speaking truth with no boundaries. Do you have a story, photo, experience or message you need to share? Send your work to nyikasilika@gmail.com.

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