GPARKS RANGER BIODIVERSITY DAY
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27th May 2019 (Monday) – In conjunction with the United Nations (UN)-sanctioned International Day for Biological Diversity (which falls on 22nd May), EcoKnights co-organized a half-day event with Gamuda Land, in collaboration with UiTM Perak, under the Gamuda Parks (GParks) Ranger initiative. The event was held at Menara Gamuda in PJ Trade Centre. With the theme of “Our Biodiversity, Our Food, Our Health” as set by the UN, this year’s celebration focused on the understanding of biodiversity as the foundation for our food and health in transforming food systems and improving human health. The event also highlighted the GParks Ranger programme, an environmental education initiative by by Gamuda Parks in partnership with EcoKnights, supported by Gamuda Land, which aims to instil environmental awareness and empowerment to the younger generation.
The opening ceremony was marked by the attendance of the CEO of Gamuda Land, Mr. Ngan Chee Meng, Programme Director of UiTM Perak Landscape Architecture Department Students (LADS) “Paint Your Imagination”, Mr. Falihin Jasmi, Senior Lecturer of UiTM Perak Landscape Architecture Department, Mr. Azrul Bahaluddin, CEO of FRIM Incorporated Sdn Bhd, Mr. Mohd. Shahidan Mohd. Arshad, Technical Officer-Wetland Specialist of Wetlands International Malaysia, Ms. Denise Cheah, Founder and President of EcoKnights, Dr. Yasmin Rasyid, the ambassadors of GParks Rangers, event partners, and the Gamuda Land employees. In his opening speech, Mr. Ngan touched on the company’s initiative and dedication to integrate sustainability into their work, while Mr. Falihin gave insight into the efforts by UiTM LADS in helping the National Autism Society of Malaysia (NASOM).The day was filled with a range of interesting eco-themed activities for both adults and children. There was an art exhibition by LADS of UiTM Perak and NASOM, titled “Paint Your Imagination: An Interpretation of Beautiful Creation”, which featured 3D artwork interpreted and re-created from paintings made by the NASOM children of Ipoh, Perak. The objective of this exhibition was to raise awareness and funds to aid the society. There was also a green market featuring seven green businesses, in which visitors were able to purchase handmade eco-friendly products.
A mini forum, or “G-Talk”, was held, with guest speakers from FRIM Inc. Sdn Bhd (Mr. Mohd. Shahidan Mohd. Arshad) and Wetlands International Malaysia (Ms. Denise Cheah), moderated by Programme Director of EcoKnights, Fadly Bakhtiar. Meanwhile, three sustainability-themed workshops were conducted for interested participants: DIY sugar scrub-making, seed-planting, and natural dye workshops. These workshops enabled participants to learn about and in the future practise greener living, and it was very encouraging to see them curious and eager to participate. A story-telling session for the kids – a relaxed activity where they gathered around to listen to two engaging stories by children’s book author, Ms. Arisha Akhir was carried out too. The total number of participants for the activities are: 20 people for G-Talk; 72 people for DIY sugar scrub-making; 33 people for seed-planting; 40 people for natural dye; and 35 kids for the story-telling session. Finally, a short film titled “Wetlands in My Heart” was screened in hopes of resonating with the audience and delivering the message of humans’ interdependence with nature.
It was an engaging and educational day for participants, especially the little GParks Rangers. Parents interested in receiving exclusive invitations to free GParks workshops and programmes may register their children as Junior Ranger at www.gparksranger.com (free registration). Gamua Parks is also open to potential collaborations with schools or kindergartens who wish to include their students in this environmental education initiative. For further information about this initiative, please visit www.gparksranger.com or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Seed-planting workshop where children planted their own vegetables and sugar scrub workshop where participants made natural body scrubs.
The kids were busy learning how to naturally dye bags in beautiful designs and patterns.
G-Talk by environmental experts (left); UiTM LADS who attended the talk and also exhibited their 3D artwork (right).
Story time with Arisha Akhir (left); GParks mascot Lugo the Flying Lemur was very popular among the little Rangers (right).