By Dr. Daljit Singh
PUCHONG - The Faculty of Agriculture, Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) and Cempaka International School Damansara in collaboration with Nature Educational Society (NEST) held an environmental education programme - Responsible Earth Citizenship Programme (REACH) which aimed at raising awareness on the importance of environmental sustainability for a healthy and prosperous human development.
The REACH programme involved seven modules. The modules “The Living Soil”, “Water that We Breathe”, and “Flora and the Life's Factory” were designed and supervised by UPM lecturers, Datin Dr. Rosenani Abu Bakar, Dr. Daljit Singh and Dr. Zulfa Hanan Ash'aari.
REACH Programme Director, Noorliza Abu Bakar said that the programme was the result of the idea conceived by Cempaka founder, Dato' Freida Pilus who wanted her students to learn the value of environmental aesthetics including the experience in fieldwork such as measuring the quality of soil, water, ecology, waste management and recycling.
"It was important for REACH participants to understand the main vision of this programme which was to expose them to outdoor activities such as identifying bird species, crop care and recycling that would contribute to the preservation of the environment," she said.
She said participants were also able to learn ways to reduce pollution and waste disposal, as well as to save costs.
"The course assessments were conducted through class discussions, followed by field activities at the Ayer Hitam Forest Reserve in Puchong," she said.
Through the activities carried out at the forest reserve, students were able to see the trees and plant species found there and ponder about the need to sustain the forest in the midst of a rapidly developing region.
UPM Facilitator, Dr. Daljit Singh also said that the contents of the module focused on the services provided by the fields of agriculture and forestry to humans.
"Trekking activities did not only expose participants to the uniqueness of the forest structure, but also on ways an equipment is used to measure trees, light intensity and relative humidity that are commonly used by forest rangers," he said.
Participants were also encouraged to use smartphone applications which showed that the advancement of technology was assimilated to simplify daily work.
NEST has various programmes with environmental concept that fit the needs of communities such as REACH. Another successful programme was the survey on bird species in the parks around Putrajaya, which was conducted by NEST with Perbadanan Putrajaya. - UPM
Date of Input: 25/03/2019 | Updated: 25/03/2019 | hairul_nizam
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