Thursday 28 May 2009

Children's Rainforest Meditation Script

Look what Clare Hyde of Hurst Green Church near Clitheroe, Lancashire sent me - A Meditation / Script that the young people will use on Sunday 7 June.

Points 1 to 9 are read by the children at the front, then the 7 or so paragraphs after are read by different adult members spread through the congregation

"Thought you'd like to see this...put together for our service on 7th....
mixture of Trinity Sunday and Environment Day!

We're also having a Rainforest Workshop on the Saturday 6 June for
children- to paint a mural and bake cakes to sell on the Sunday aid
of the Children's Eternal Rainforest.

All the best, Clare"


IMAGINE that you are sitting on a log in a rainforest in Central America. This is part of the largest private reserve in Costa Rica, purchased and protected by the fundraising of children all over the world and named El Bosque Eterno de los Ninos or the Childrens' Eternal Rainforest.
We are going to introduce you to some of the plants and animals of this richly biodiverse habitat.

1. I am a KAPOK TREE. Measuring 230 feet, I am one of the tallest trees in this forest - what is called an emergent, as I emerge above the canopy into the strong sunlight, exposed to the wind. I am home to a huge variety of wildlife, which feed from my flowerbuds, fruits and seeds. Parrots and eagles, colobus monkeys and lemurs live up here in my branches. Other plants live on my boughs like lichens, bromeliads and cacti, looking like a tree-top garden.

2. I am a LIANA. I don't have a trunk of my own but I need a lot of light, so my slender climbing stems use the trees for support to reach up to the canopy. Tree frogs, insects and small mammals like to live in the dense, damp vegetation of the canopy.

3. I am a TOADSTOOL, that takes nutrients from the litter of dead leaves and branches on the forest floor. Not much light can get down here, where it is very humid. Even so, birds, insects and reptiles live amongst the roots and leaf litter.

4. I am a JESUS CHRIST LIZARD. I use my tail to balance, and the flap of skin on my hind toes enables me to run on water to chase prey or escape danger.

5. I am an EPIPHYTE - an orchid. I am a plant which attaches itself ton the branches of trees, using them simply as a way to reach the light, but getting nutrients from rainwater and plant fragments.

6. I am a SCARLET MACAW. my nest is 100 feet above the forest floor, and I can use my wings to glide through the trees.

7. I am a GOLDEN BEETLE. I am over one inch long. I can only be found in Costa Rica.

8. I am a TAPIR. I like to be active at night, swimming in the rivers of the rainforest, searching for leaves, fruit and seeds.

9. I am a JAGUAR. I am a big cat, with a spotted coat, which allows me to hide amongst the grasses, bushes and trees. Sadly, my coat was prized by humans and their hunting of us has nearly brought us to extinction. I spend much of my time on the floor of the rainforest, and hunt at night.

The rainforest may seem remote from the lives we lead, but we are as dependent on its survival as if it was a few miles away!

Every minute of the day, 100 acres of rainforest are destroyed. That's 100 football pitches! By the end of this service at least 6,000 acres will have gone!... and with it the animals that live there.

At this rate there could be no rainforests left in 30 years time - forests that have survived and thrived for millions of years.

The rainforest is home for valuable trees, like mahogany which bring in a good income for the native, and mostly poor , countries, The timber is sold to rich countries for furniture, doors, loo seats and coffins. Sadly, the huge machinery used to cut the trees down, damages the forest for miles around.

Some rainforests are rich in precious metals and gemstones - gold, silver and diamonds - and are laid waste by machines and pollution.

Rainforests are also cleared for farming, as the soil is rich in nutrients and yields are high for a few years. But the fertility of the soil, ironically, is dependent on the lush layers of vegetation which have been cleared. After 2 or 3 years, the goodness has been washes away and the farmers move on.

Cattle ranching and industrial farming , for example of soya beans and palm oil,are responsible for the loss of great swathes of rainforest, encouraged by the rich countries appetite for beefburgers and a vegetarian alternative.

Apart from the myriad variety of life in the rainforest, many plants provide us with brazil nuts, chocolate, chewing gum, vanilla and the base for many medicines. But more importantly, the rainforests are the lungs of the earth. They regulate the world's atmosphere and climate.

again .....

You are breathing in oxygen, vital for your survival.

These mighty trees provide YOU with that through THEIR respiration- absorbing the carbon dioxide that you exhale...not to mention the rest of the carbon dioxide we produce in our activity!
Now, more than ever in man's history on earth, we need these trees and the rich diversity of life that they support.


This was written by Clare Hyde ( of Hurst Green, Clitheroe. She is happy for other groups to use the text, provided she is credited.


Tuesday 5 May 2009

Cherry Blossom Time

Cherry Blossom Time at Harrogate Stray

The cherry blossom is at its best today on the Stray at Harrogate... and the grass below carpeted with petals.

I went to visit a friend in an old peoples' home next to the Valley Gardens, at Harrogate on 3 May. We went for a short walk in the Gardens, also lit up by cherry blossom. We watched people on a trampoline with bungie ropes turning somersaults in mid air.

Great.. This is the first "walk with and old person" I have achieved in 2009 - This is the activitiy I have put to be sponsored for when I ask people to sponsor me for the Rainforest.

Friday 1 May 2009

Green Trees from hospital window

Please donate to one of the funds the blog supports. Please save the important habitats of our natural world.

Happy May Day.

I am still visiting my mother in Harrogate Hospital. She has been in hospital a month now and has been missing seeing all the trees come into leaf, and missing the spring flowers.

On Monday she was moved from the room for six that had no view at all except for two tiny high up windows which overlooked a brick wall, into a single room that has a relatively large window with a view onto young horse chestnut trees - and if you could see beyond these there is the Stray beyond (mown grassland with trees inside Harrogate). I was so pleased she has a view of green trees, and the sky and clouds and sun. (Even though she was only moved here because she now has hospital diarrhea). The nurses are nice.

Research has shown that people get better quicker if they can see green natural environments.

On Wednesday I also had the good news that her (now my) 15 year old car which I drive passed its MOT test. What a relief. I dreaded it failing. But it passed. So I can continue to use it to go and visit her. Not very good for the CO2 this driving though.