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Volunteering to sustain the earth that sustains us
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29 April 2019 Volunteering to sustain the earth that sustains us

Written by: Janine P. Francisco

Photo from Department of Environment and Natural Resources
In 2008, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo signed Proclamation No. 1482 s. 2008 declaring April as “Month of Planet Earth”. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) was tasked to spearhead the conduct of said annual celebration which primarily aims to increase awareness on the importance of Earth Sciences.

The National Volunteer Deployment Framework (NVDF) of PNVSCA identified the Environment sector as one of the priorities for volunteer assistance. Environment has the 3rd highest number of foreign volunteer assistance with fifty-two (52) volunteers assisting projects and activities in Coastal Resource Management, Provision of Clean Water, Solid Waste Management Land Use Planning and Disaster Risks Reduction and Management implemented by Local Government Units (LGUs), Non-government Organizations (NGO) and Academic Institutions in twenty (20) provinces. Assisting them are volunteers from the United States Peace Corps (USPC), Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), France Voluntaires (FV) and Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), PNVSCA partner international volunteer service organizations (IVSO).

Local volunteers across the Philippines also do various activities in support to sustaining and protecting Earth. In celebration of the National Volunteer Month last December, activities such as coastal clean-up was done by the Eulogio "Amang" Rodriguez Institute of Science and Technology and Philippine Statistics Authority; and NARRA: Needs and Awareness for Reforestation Activity University of Santo Tomas while DENR honored their environmental programs partners through the conduct of the “Boluntarismo: Tugon sa Nagbabagong Panahon” recognition ceremony.

Now more than ever, with the challenge of adapting to climate change and the onslaught of typhoons and earthquakes in the Philippines, understanding the significance of Earth Sciences will let us have the upper hand on how we can utilize it to reduce the risks of calamities.

Moreover, in our little ways such as minimizing use of plastics or having plants in our house and yard, we are volunteering to take care of the planet that sustains and protects us.

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