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Arbor day/week officially proclaimed by the Government of Saskatchewan

The Yellowhead Flyway Birding Trail Association (YFBTA), an affiliate of Nature Saskatchewan, has received official word from the Hon. Dustin Duncan, Minister of the Environment, that the Government of Saskatchewan officially proclaimed May 22 as Arbor Day and May 17-24 as Arbor Week on April 25.

In doing so, the Hon. Dustin Duncan indicated that the announcement will be publicized through Saskatchewan Environment's Facebook page. On the Certificate of Recognition Mr. Duncan states, ”I request the citizens of the Province of Saskatchewan to recognize this day/week.”  Thank you, Minister Duncan.

The YFBTA began working towards this goal early in 2019 by asking the Province to proclaim and publicize an annual spring Arbor Day/Arbor Week. The support of Nature Saskatchewan added appreciated weight to the call.

For many years within the province an annual spring observance occurred that involved most schools, many community groups and municipalities, and concerned individuals. The day was marked with the planting of trees, the cleaning up of yards, streets and alleys, choosing and protecting a particular area of natural habitat and generally celebrating our dependence upon nature and specifically trees.

Arbor Day was founded in 1872 by J. Sterling Morton, a newspaperman, in Nebraska City, Nebraska. On the first Arbor Day, April 10, 1872, an estimated one million trees were planted. The idea and the observance of the special day spread quickly through North America and to many other parts of the globe.

Arbor Day and Arbor Week observances are locally planned and carried out. They are participatory and at their best when the activities are inter-generational and involving of as many citizens as possible. Groups can work together or an individual  or household can celebrate by planting a tree and encouraging a neighbour to do the same.

This year, because of COVID-19, it may take a little more imagination to become personally engaged and for groups and communities to plan special projects or activities safely. Whatever you do will contribute to healthier communities, healthier environments, a healthier world. Plant a tree.

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