Meet The Team
passionate individuals driving change as a team
Join the Movement
Nick De Swardt
Community Conservation Manager
Social Media Manager
Urban Community Engagement Manager
Field Officer Deve
Stewardship and Counter Supervisor
A Letter from our Operations Manager
Welcome to the My Trees Trust.
I write to you with a humility which comes from knowing that we live and work within a Zimbabwean community where our influence will last for some time to come – if we do things right! We recognise that it is imperative to nurture healthy relationships so that the development we are aiming to catalyse is inculcated fully and adopted by the community to become theirs and that this influence lasts well beyond our time.
“If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.” – African Proverb.
Our story is one in which passion meets practicality, corporate meets community and deep Zimbabwean values are harnessed to match the already beautiful narrative of its people. In this landscape-based approach, community-orientated sustainable development program, it is the relationships we foster, which are the backbone of our success. The concept of protecting what future generations should be able to have at their disposal is as much a global concept as it is inherent in the way of life for our own communities. However, the obvious socio-economic challenges in a world where meeting day to day rural homestead needs has plunged the communities we choose to work with into an insatiable need for woodfuel and a resultant catastrophic rate of deforestation of indigenous woodlands.
An elderly lady within the community, Gogo Kapuya, tells me of her memory of the beauty of the flora and fauna in her village. She further reminisces about how their lives tied seamlessly with the change in season, and how their needs were met with what now seems like a minimal amount of strain. She asks me rhetorically whether her grandchildren will ever live a similarly simple yet fulfilling life. I feel the answer to that question must be yes! And this is what we should endeavour to achieve with the help of both local community residents and a wider network of influence. What we do know is that can’t do this alone!
Our work is not only about the restoration of land as we plant trees. It is so much more. And some aspects of what we do are impossible to put into figures. We want to be part of a journey for these communities and want others to join with us, grow with us and become part of a uniquely positive story. There is so much to be achieved with Gogo Kapuya, her village and other societies in rural Zimbabwe, as we take on the challenge to restore biodiversity and protect homelands and livelihoods for the next generation.
Tendayi Jeyacheya – Operations Manager