Student Engagement in Climate Justice
Climate Action and Mitigation Sustainability Initiative in Yola, Nigeria
Pastor Habila Shede leading faith leaders in reforesting their community
Where Pastor Shede Habila lives in Nigeria, 90% of the population are small-scale farmers. Deforestation of land for agriculture combined with severe climate change-induced downpours has led to erosion and flooding which threaten the livelihood of the entire community. For his Sacred Action Project for the Certificate in Climate Justice and Faith, Pastor Habila launched The CAMSI (Climate Action and Mitigation Sustainability Initiative) Project. This initiative is designed to inform the local community of the long-term impacts of deforestation and start planting trees as a community in order to combat erosion.
To launch the CAMSI Project, Pastor Habila organized a three-day seminar for the youth in his area to talk about climate action and plant trees together. More than 45 youth, women, and men attended the three-day seminar. Elders in the community shared just how much their community’s environment has changed over the years, youth shared their hopes for the future, the entire group studied scripture together, and then everyone made a commitment to work together to reforest their community. At the end of the three days together, the community planted dozens of trees and one of the church councils committed to starting a garden on the church premises. Pastor Habila hopes this seminar will prevent future deforestation in his community and inspire people to plant more trees on their land.
Pastor Habila is earning his Masters Arts Theology Degree in Christian Ethics at the Theological College of Northern Nigeria. He believes that action on climate change is sacred action because God calls us to care for creation.