The First Lady Amai Auxillia Mnangagwa has launched the Schools Integrated Environmental Programme for Masvingo Province at Mutendi High, amid calls for communities to conserve the environment.

The Integrated Environmental Programme which is spearheaded by the Ministry of Environment, Water and Climate seeks to empower school children and surrounding communities with life skills through sustainable use of the environment.

Some of the programmes include growing of fruit trees, timber and fish breeding. 

The launch of the programme at Mutendi High School saw the First Lady and other delegates planting trees, with Amai Mnangagwa also depositing fingerlings into a pond build at the school.

Addressing school authorities and members of the community Amai Mnangagwa emphasized the importance of sustainable use of the environment.

“I am convinced that this programme is worthy of our support and should be cascaded to all schools when the necessary financial resources are available,” said the First Lady.

There is continuous rampant cutting down of trees and stream bank cultivation, said Mai Mnangagwa as she called on communities to desist from such practices.

“The issue of cutiing down trees is worrisome. Some of these challenges are a result of our own conduct and practices such as uncontrolled cutting down of trees for sell as firewood to generate income, poaching of wildlife for protein, careless lighting of fires,” she said.

The Integrated Environmental Programme has also been launched at Balu High School in Matabeleland South, Chidembo High School in Shamva, Mashonaland East Province among other schools.