Hakim Ouzzani (left), MD, Societe Generale, and Philomena Owusu-Ansah, Headmistress of St Mary’s SHS, planting a tree during the exercise
Some staff of the SG Ghana engaging in the tree planting exercise

Societe Generale plants trees at St Mary SHS ...To combat climate change

Societe Generale Ghana (SG Ghana) has embarked on a tree planting exercise at the St Mary’s Girls Senior High School as part of its corporate social responsibility (CSR) and commitment to combat climate change.


The exercise was in line with the bank’s environmental agenda, which among others, seeks to support the national effort to mitigate climate change by improving the country’s vegetative cover thereby increasing Ghana’s chances of meeting the sustainable development goal (SDG) 13.

The tree planting exercise, which took place on November 10, was carried out in partnership with the Forestry Commission.

Among the over 40 seedlings planted included mango, blackberries and guava.

Interacting with the students before the exercise, the Managing Director of the bank, Hakim Ouzzani,  said a recent study estimated that there were about three trillion trees on the planet.

Although they may seem like a huge number, he said the human population was increasing exponentially and civilisation kept increasing, thus, having great impact on the vegetation.

He said if nothing was done about the situation to restore lost vegetation, the earth might lose a crucial ally in slowing down global warming.

“If one person plants one tree each year, there will be about eight billion trees more each year on the planet.

All may not survive but if we make a conscious effort to plant trees each year, we can imagine the positive effect it will have on this planet.

“Same way if we have people destroying trees every day, that can also lead to a more adverse impact on the planet,” Mr Ouzzani said.

He, therefore, urged the students not to undermine the impact they could make on the planet with their little effort by planting trees each year.

“I wish you all the best in your studies but you should remember that at the end of the day, your grade won’t really matter but rather, the impact you made on this planet,” he added. 

Everyone’s duty

The Headmistress of the school, Philomena Owusu-Ansah, also stated that per the SDG 13, everyone had a responsibility to the environment and must therefore take an action to safeguard the climate.

In that regard, she said the school was happy to partner with the bank to embark on such an exercise to improve the school’s environment.

“For you to select St Mary’s and not any other school, we are so grateful.

We know that this intervention is going to benefit the school and the society because it is believed that when the last tree dies, the last person dies,”Mrs  Owusu-Ansah said.

She gave an assurance that the school would ensure that the trees were nurtured and closely monitored to grow in order to restore what had been lost.

“We are so hopeful that this isn’t going to be just a one-time visit, we hope to see you often in our school and also support some of our school activities,” the headmistress said.

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