We have a lot to learn from trees,” says Sahil Jindal, member of RAC Mansa City Royal, RID 3090. “Did you know trees have means for protecting themselves against most diseases and insects with their bark? Several factors can weaken or destroy trees, like too much or too little water, poor soil, injury to the trunk or roots, and mostly felling.” In 2020 his club “took an oath to protect trees in the neighbourhood.”
To make it more meaningful, interesting, and to emotionally connect to the cause “we decided to celebrate Raksha Bandhan with the trees. This festival celebrates the bond between a brother and sister and the care and protection they have for each other,” says Jindal. The club members tied rakhi to trees and pledged to protect them, calling the Project Vriksha Bandhan.”
“We designed special bigger, brighter and biodegradable rakhis for trees,” says Vasundra Jaitly, the project chair. The Rotaractors chose their trees and tied rakhis, sending out a message to protect the environment. “Some of us hugged the trees and it was a great experience,” she says.
Ten other clubs from RID 3090 too participated in the project. “It does not stop with this. We will check on our trees and ensure it grows well. We will soon come up with an initiative where club members can adopt a tree each and care for it,” says Jindal.
When the club received information from cattle farmers about their cows suffering from the lumpy skin disease in the past few months, Ankush Garg, IPP of the club, swung into action. “It was his idea to administer the lumpy skin vaccines to the cows, and extend care for the animals affected by this virus. Over 30 cows were treated and now they are recovering,” says Jindal.
Club members pooled in funds to distribute healthy meals to 65 daily wage workers employed at gaushalas in Mansa.