A touch of soil for healing
by Vhen Marasigan, Haribon Foundation Partner
Soothing weather on a sunny day, waving leaves of trees and cheerful tweets of birds welcomed us at the Buhay Punlaan, Haribon Foundation’s nursery of native trees at the Caliraya-Lumot Watershed in Lumban, Laguna. Buhay Punlaan is a delightful abode not only to the different species of trees, birds and insects at range but to our group who is literally starved for a relaxing adventure.
Our company, Thousand Oaks Packaging Corporation (TOPC) is engaged in the manufacture of corrugated carton packaging. It is not incidental that the company’s name was derived from a tree and the raw materials used in our business originated from the pulp of trees. Our company acknowledges the environmental impacts brought about by its products and is aware of the changing climate that affects the environment and the lives of people. It is for this reason that TOPC supports and promotes activities that aim to conserve the environment.
This year, the company has incorporated tree planting in its activities and just like in the past, we have requested the support of Haribon Foundation for this endeavor. Thousand Oaks and Haribon Foundation’s partnership started in 2004 when the TOPC requested the latter to conduct environment awareness session to their employees. Continuing this partnership that started nine years ago, we found ourselves again at the nursery of native trees in Lumban, Laguna. And lo, the sight is awe-inspiring.
The experience at Buhay Punlaan from the exciting collection of wildlings to the hip - tiring transplanting of seed germinant help us appreciate the art of planting trees. The sweat poured out while sieving the soil, mixing potting medium and soil bagging has taught all of us the value of every tree being planted. The orientation presented to us facilitated the deeper understanding of the values of rain forestation and awareness of the danger of losing the remaining forested area in the country. The experience in the nursery taught us that every tree undergoes a complex growth pattern and that outmost care must be applied to every seedling. The entire activity has indeed inculcated deeper understanding of the importance of trees in our life and prepared us for our next tree planting activity.
Truly, the experience has brought me and my co-employees at TOPC dearer to Mother Nature. It has reminded all of us that Nature is a gift from the Creator and it is but proper to protect and conserve it. Planting trees give us the experience of touching the soil which gives healing not only to the hands but also to the Earth. If we continue planting trees, we continue healing the world thus continue giving life to all creatures of the world.
We commend Haribon Foundation for this noble mission. Mabuhay po kayo! We hope and pray that more people will help in this worthy cause.
The writer, Mr. Vhen Marasigan is the Management Representative and Head of the Quality and Productivity Committee of Thousand Oaks Packaging Corporation.