While we celebrate World Environment Day on 6th of June under the theme of Only One Earth, we have got some exciting news from our team who has embarked on a conscious journey in preserving, conserving and restoring eco systems in Sri Lanka.
The first tree planning session of the Cinnamon Rainforest Restoration Project of John Keells Foundation (CSR arm of John Keells Holdings) was successfully completed on the 21st of May 2022 at Kalawana, an area close to one of the country’s UNESCO world heritage sites, Sinharaja rain forest. 10 passionate staff of Walkers Tours together with 30 more volunteers from our mother company, John Keells Holdings volunteered at this initial event of transporting the saplings to the ridge of the plot and planting saplings at designated places under the supervision of the field experts. Walkers Tours, as a part of the sustainability collaborations, has pledged to maintain a land of 5 acres until March 2024 and is planning to get the international clients engaged in the project. Stay tuned for more details.
The project head and wildlife biologist, our own Mr. Vimukthi Weeratunga accompanied the team and explained the diversity of flora and fauna that will be created to restore the biodiversity of the wet zone and also the impact of the conservational efforts that can be witnessed in 10-15 years.
More details about the project :
“Cinnamon Rainforest Restoration Project” was launched in collaboration with Ruk Rakaganno (The Tree Society of Sri Lanka), Forest Department Sri Lanka, Cinnamon Hotels & Resorts and John Keells Foundation, to restore a degraded 50-acre plot over a period of three years after which nature will take over the regeneration process. Natural forest regrowth is increasingly being seen as a viable climate change solution globally and this project, heralds the dawn of a new era in enriching Sri Lanka’s biodiversity amid a sense of urgency. The 50-acre site is situated in the Ratnapura District, at a proximity of 3.5 kilometers from the biodiversity hotspot and UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Sinharaja Forest Reserve, one of the few virgin forests left in the country. Restoring and reforesting this 50-acre site will further enrich the ecological significance of the region which also consists of numerous waterfalls and places of cultural and religious significance. The “Cinnamon Rainforest Restoration Project” provides a timely role model for corporate institutions working with government organizations and NGOs to conserve the biodiversity.