Editor’s Note: This article is contributed by Desiree Tay, a Year 2 NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine student and a first-time Project Sukacita participant. When I first received...
APRIL Group joined young Southeast Asian environmentalists, Singaporean school students and representatives from the National Parks Board (NParks) as part of a tripartite enhancement of the Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park‘s Butterfly Habitat.
More butterflies for Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park
In the morning July 24, 2015, the multi-stakeholder group of public, private and people sector participants planted more than 300 trees, adding 15 more new plant species to provide food for butterflies and caterpillars. The shrub planting is expected to double the size of the 260 square metre butterfly habitat, and attract an additional five to seven species of butterflies to the existing 25 which have already been spotted at the park. The event was attended by Guest-of-Honour Senior Minister of State for Transport and Finance and Member of Parliament for Bishan-Toa Payoh Group Representation Constituency, Josephine Teo, 77th Street Founder Elim Chew, NParks’ Assistant CEO Kong Yit San, students from Ang Mo Kio Secondary, Hillgrove Secondary and National University of Singapore, and young environmentalist delegates from the ASEAN Power Shift 2015. (More: APRIL Group’s news release)
APRIL Group’s five-year commitment
The effort to improve the butterfly habitat is part of APRIL Group’s five-year sponsorship of SGD 100,000 to NParks through its registered charity and IPC (Institutions of a Public Character), Garden City Fund. The partnership between APRIL and NParks also includes placing educational signage for the improved butterfly habitat, and the planting of 250 trees at Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park later this year. The shrub planting occasion at the park also commemorates SG50 – Singapore’s 50th year of independence. (Also see: Media coverage by Straits Times [also here], TODAY and Channel NewsAsia)
Active community engagement
APRIL Group Chairman Bey Soo Khiang outlined the significance of APRIL’s sponsorship and involvement, saying the partnership with NParks was meaningful and reflected APRIL’s focus on conservation and community engagement. (Link: Mr Bey’s full speech) Close and fruitful community engagement is at the heart of APRIL Group’s operations. Behind the direct and indirect creation of 90,000 jobs, the protection of 250,000 hectares of high conservation value forests and its robust fire prevention programmes, lie active and meaningful engagement and collaboration with communities, farmers, governments and NGOs. APRIL Group’s participation in the greening of Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park marks another chapter in pulp and paper giant’s role in carbon sequestration, eco-restoration, conservation and protection of biodiversity. The presence of students and young environmentalists from the ASEAN Power Shift 2015 conference also symbolises APRIL’s commitment towards sustainability through the partnering of potential key environmental stakeholders and custodians of the future. APRIL has championed sustainable forest management and reached out to youths through engagement and educational programmes such as ‘The Fascinating World of Forestry’. These remain aligned with APRIL’s business principle of doing what is good for the community and good for the country before achieving what is good for the company.