seedlings were planted in the Tyumen area for three years on an area of 4 hectares
Since 2019, the Tobolsk Forest project has been operating in the Tyumen region: SIBUR, in cooperation with the regional authorities, is restoring forests. For three years, 17 thousand saplings were planted in the area, 4 acres of forests were restored.
The area is planted not only by SIBUR employees, whom the company encourages to become ecological volunteers, but also by students and teachers from local school forestry. Training programs have been developed for them and a grant competition has been established: each year, the authors of the best environmental education projects receive funding for their implementation.
“We saw that there was a growing need for large companies to participate in forest conservation, we realized the value of such a social investment and we started to develop a program,” he said. Elena Belskaya, Head of the Department of Interaction with Government Authorities and Implementation of Social and Economic Projects of ZapSibNeftekhim LLC. Planting many hectares of trees is not difficult. But we wanted to unite all those who will be involved in this process, to form a nucleus of like-minded people from them. “Our goal is for a large project to lead to many small environmental projects.”
Project area – The winners of the competition proved to be extensive: both large schools in Tyumen and small schools in remote villages applied.
How love transformed the schoolyard
Biology teacher Lyubov Novoselova worked as a pharmacist for 13 years before coming to Setov School. Immersed in school life, she began to engage in ecological volunteering, involving her students in it and, as she puts it, “not directly helping people, as before, but nature and through it, people.”
“It all started with another ecological project by Lapwing Territories,” says Lyubov. – The children participated in the bird rally, saw the conditions in which the birds live and were thrilled. “After that, everything started to spin and the students and I started doing different projects.”
Lyubov notes that she has never participated in competitions before: neither when she was a student, nor in college and institute. While working at school, he became an active user of social networks, so as not to lose interesting information.
The main thing is to “be informed”.
In one of the newsletters I saw a message for the “Tobolsk Forest” competition and realized that her school had to participate.
“Our school opened in 1970,” says Lyubov. The firs were planted by graduates. In 2013, a new school building was built nearby and almost all the trees, with the exception of the 27 firs, had to be cut down. It seems they did not want to harm nature, but there was no other way. Instead of sawn firs, pines and pines were planted, but not all of them took root.
The teacher thought that the school should restore the lost trees, at the same time showing the children how a person can transform the environment around him.
Together with the students, Lyubov applied for the competition. The School Arboretum project won a grant and the school premises were planted. Under the guidance of a biology teacher, students, members of the Young Ecologists circle planted trees, shrubs and flowers.
The school arboretum performs many functions simultaneously: decorative, ecological and educational. “Our arboriculture is not only beautiful. “I explain to the students that trees emit oxygen, without which we can not live, which means that they improve the air around our school,” says Lyubov. He believes that the school premises “affect the environmental consciousness”.
According to her, children should see how a person affects nature: “I believe that school students should be taught to save natural resources and recycle waste. Introduce healthy environmental habits into their lives.
Lyubov believes that it is more effective to give elementary school students only the theory of environmental consciousness and to conduct practical lessons with middle-aged and older students.
How rural physical education teacher Oleg became a rancher
Oleg, a physical education teacher at Yantykovskaya School in Tyumen, came to Earthworm Vermifarm aware of the importance of proper nutrition. “I have a motto: ‘Ecology, sports, health,'” he says. “You need to eat organic food and follow an active lifestyle to maintain your health for many years.”
A few years ago, Oleg began to have health problems and began to change his taste habits, carefully studying the composition of products and the conditions for their manufacture.
“Few people understand that in order for products to be useful, they need to be developed in an environmentally friendly environment,” he says.
Oleg worked in a sports complex and, according to him, he dreamed of implementing his ecological project, but there was no opportunity. In December 2019, he came to work at the Yantykov School and a few months later won a SIBUR grant for a plant growing project.
Recalls that the school received a letter from the Ministry of Education of the Tyumen Region with information about the Tobolsk Forest competition. “At that time, I had an almost finished worm farm project and there was a group of high school students who were interested in doing that,” he says.
According to Oleg, the school management was surprised that a teacher who got a job a few months ago won the district competition: “At first they probably did not really understand what kind of work I was going to do. “But they gave me the opportunity to apply it and, having seen the result, they appreciated it.”
Together with the students, the physical education teacher organized the production of biohumus, or, in other words, vermicompost, an organic fertilizer obtained with the help of earthworms. In 2021, according to Oleg, the school recycled 80% of the waste that had previously been thrown away and received 300 liters of biohumus. The school started using the fertilizer when it planted vegetables on the school grounds.
previously discarded waste, the school recycled and received 300 liters of biohumus
Oleg began to tell his fellow villagers about modern farming methods. “Of course, they are used to using ordinary manure and they do not understand why they should refuse it. “I try to explain to them that manure only works for the third year and vermicompost immediately,” Oleg complains, but does not give up.
The teacher has big plans. He plans to assemble a new team, as the teenagers with whom he ran the worm farm have graduated from school and mastered the processing of bird droppings.
Oleg notes that with the help of earthworms, an extremely effective fertilizer can be obtained from chicken manure.
It plans to promote the diffusion of crop cultivation into other schools. “Volunteering imposes responsibility and motivates growth: I want something more, to go further,” the teacher notes.
The forest that Anastasia restores
Anastasia Prosyanik, a ten-year-old volunteer, was driven to ecological activism by a life event – trees were cut down near her home. In 2019, when the Tobolsk Forest project started, he was involved in forest restoration. During this time Anastasia planted 200 seedlings and 30 trees. “You have to be able not only to receive, but also to give,” he argues. “We breathe oxygen, so trees need to be planted so that there is more fresh air.”
Anastasia is an employee of SIBUR, works as a leading procurement specialist at the Petrochemical Transport Company and for over ten years has managed to be at the same time participant and coordinator of many sports and social projects.
Collect New Year’s gifts for children from shelters, build warm homes for homeless animals and group kennels for dogs as part of SIBUR’s Formula of Good Deeds social investment program.
Anastasia believes that her volunteering has taught her to appreciate simple things: “life, family love, work, sports, emotions from watching a movie, a cup of morning coffee, a childish smile, wagging my dog tails”.
“I began to observe and celebrate other people’s successes and victories. “It inspired me,” he shares.
Anastasia notes with regret that the forests “burn immediately and recover for decades. And we must remember this and help our nature. “Tree planting is not a difficult activity at all, but it is productive and creative,” he says.