ISLAMABAD: Oxfam International launched a nationwide tree-plantation campaign, ‘Youth ka Green Pakistan’, in 20 government colleges to plant over 4000 trees. The campaign, which began on the seventh of August, encouraged the youth of Pakistan to take small steps toward making Pakistan green so that it could address environmental issues.Previously, the International Youth Day (August 12) and Pakistan’s Independence Day (August 14) were celebrated as part of the campaign to inspire youth to work towards clean, green and safe Pakistan To inaugurate the first tree-plantation activity by Oxfam, Quality and Funding Director Oxfam, Uzma Aftab, planted a tree at Islamabad Model College for Girls at Sector F-7/4 and Program Director, Adeel Qaiser, planted a tree at Islamabad College for Boys at Sector G-6/3 along with the college principal, faculty members and students.Addressing the participants, Ms. Uzma Aftab said that the youth of Pakistan, almost 64% of the entire population, were the real driving-force for the change and ‘Youth Ka Green Pakistan’ Campaign not only encouraged the young people to share their perspective on the kind of future they wanted for their country but also to take active part in creating such a future. Adeel Qaiser, while addressing, stressed at the importance of the after-care of the planted trees. He said, “I am happy to see such active participation of our youth. We need to take this tree plantation movement to a scale that makes our part of the globe a healthier place to live for future generations.”The campaign, being led by Oxfam’s Empower Youth for Work (EYW) team, was headed by Seher Afsheen, and the activities would continue till the end of August. Appreciating the efforts of the volunteers, Ms. Afsheen said, “Through this campaign, we hope to utilize the energy, strength and creativity of the youth and encourage them to take lead in building their own future which is physically and environmentally safe, inclusive and conducive to growth.” Pakistan was among the countries which were hit hardest by the effects of climate change. The campaign focused on two major themes, environment and the spirit of humanitarianism. Under the theme of environment, young people would be encouraged to take the lead in reducing water wastage, improving solid-waste management and planting more trees while under the theme of humanitarianism, the youth, who took steps for the welfare of the humanity, would be recognized and celebrated.An ongoing digital campaign on social media allowed the youth to take photos of their efforts to make Pakistan green and post them with the hash tag, ‘#YouthKaGreenPakistan’. The campaign, a collaborative effort of the National Agricultural Research Centre (NARC), the government colleges and some plant-nurseries of Islamabad, graciously provided free-of-cost pants to the youth. It would not only promote the spirit of protecting the environment but would also encourage a sense of social responsibility in the youth. Published in Daily Times, August 19th 2018.