WHOSE FOREST IS THE HEALTHIEST OF THEM ALL? BOH Announces Winner of the BOH Virtual Forest Competition
Shah Alam, Selangor - Cheers of joy was followed by resounding thunderous applause as SMK Seksyen 18, Shah Alam, SMK Sri Tebrau, SMK Raja Perempuan, SMK Dr Megat Khas and SMK Bukit Jelutong were declared among the top five winners of the recent BOH Virtual Forest Competition.
The students worked relentlessly over one month to answer questions about forest management and endeavoured to keep their school’s virtual forest healthy and lush. Their efforts were rewarded when they each walked away with an RM 2,000 cheque.
In addition to that, 32 individual students with the highest scores were also presented special prizes for their role in keeping their school’s virtual forest alive and healthy. Students were ranked based on their most creative slogan and the first five students took home an iPad each, 10 students received an iPod while the remaining 17, a Swatch watch each.
Jointly organised by BOH Plantations Sdn Bhd (BOH) and WWF-Malaysia the BOH Virtual Forest Competition, is part of the BOH Forest Friends School Programme which was launched in June this year and successfully concluded a month later. The competition which was divided into two levels (school and individual category) saw the participation of 4,365 secondary school students from 128 schools across Peninsular Malaysia.
“The environment is an integral part of our business and in line with our tagline ‘Share the Ummph,’ the BOH Forest Friends School Programme was initiated to nurture a passion for the environment, specifically our local rainforest,” Caroline Russell, Chief Executive Officer of BOH shared at the prize-giving ceremony.
Also present to celebrate the efforts of the schools and students was Dato’ Dr Dionysius Sharma, Executive Director / Chief Executive Officer of WWF-Malaysia.
“It is very encouraging and motivating for us to see schools and students alike take a keen interest in our environment and forestry. This programme is important to show students what they can do and how they can encourage those around them to do their bit to reduce deforestation and its impact,” said Dato’ Dr Dionysius.
Russell said that the BOH Forest Friends School Programme is another platform to articulate BOH and WWF-Malaysia’s alliance to conserve and protect the environment. “In the past, we focused on educating the younger generation about the conservation of Orang-utan and its fight for survival. However, this time, we expanded our focus beyond animals to understand the issues affecting our forest and to encourage the younger generation to be proactive in protecting our natural resources, regardless their tender age,” explained Russell.
The BOH Forest Friends School Programme consisted of two key facets. Firstly, visits and talks to 100 schools were conducted in the Peninsular where students were enlightened about deforestation and its impact on the environment. They also received tips on how they can be a positive influence on their peers and community to care for the environment.
Secondly was the BOH Virtual Forest Competition which required students to answer questions about deforestation. Each correct answer allowed them the opportunity to nurture the school’s virtual forest.
In addition to this partnership, BOH is also supporting WWF-Malaysia’s ‘Forest Initiatives Inside Out – Stewardship by Students’ programme. The focus of this programme is to assist and encourage schools to adopt a 7-step methodology through the Eco-Schools programme designed to empower students on environmental stewardship through student-led initiatives through real-life learning and action oriented activities. Some of the key areas covered in the programme are energy, waste, water and nature & biodiversity.
“It is important that our future generation be aware of the delicate situation concerning the survival of our environment. Our hope is that they will utilise the knowledge they have garnered through this campaign to encourage each other, both now and in the future, to safeguard the posterity of our natural rainforest for generations to come. Every little bit we do today will matter to our children tomorrow,” said Russell.