The Tree Project: As Funded By
The furrowed lines on his forehead deepened as a moment of concern crossed his face. Sam sipped on his now lukewarm cup of coffee. The latest headlines claimed a 42% chance we are headed for a 1.5 °C increase in global temperatures, even if we stopped all emissions today.
He let out a breath he hadn’t even realised he was holding.
This stuff was getting to him more and more. The other day he was reading about the plight of coffee plants and vineyards. Rising temperatures were damaging coffee yields. He looked at the mug of coffee in his hand. What else could go?
It was all so depressing.
His dark thoughts rested on the future. Would his kids survive to see their kids? What with all these natural disasters. What happens to people living below the poverty line? Slowly, he focused on the view outside his window and fought back the invasive thoughts clamouring for his attention. If only he could find answers.
Spend too long reading about climate change and its disturbing realities, and you can't help but start ruminating on dark armageddon-type thoughts.
Everything starts to feel hopeless. To tell you the truth, we've been there too.
You are stuck between blocking out the fear of the future and wanting to do something about it.
Not knowing how best to move forwards is crippling.
Not to mention the guilt that creeps in because you've read all the blogs. Page after page of advice telling you to stop travelling, walk more, shop local and wear a ski suit at home to keep warm during the winter. When it comes down to it, you don't want to change your life, so you push ANY change to the side, even the smallest and most insignificant of things.
Because the mountain seems too big to set foot on.
There seems to be no middle ground, place of gain, or good option, so you suppress the thoughts. The planet warming up sits at the back of your mind in a constant state of low-level anxiety, waiting to rear its ugly head at the next cyclone, unprecedented bush fire or hurricane.
It feels hopeless.
What can you do?
The planet has changed so much over the past 30 years.
Living in rural Malawi, we have seen forests turn to dust, and the lush green rainy season give way to extensive dry seasons. Each longer and more drawn out with every passing year.
It is not surprising, as Malawi has one of the fastest rates of deforestation in Africa.
We see people’s mud-walled homes collapse with the force of the annual rain. These days a month’s worth of rain can fall in 24 hours. Fields are ripped apart, and crops are washed away. In much of Malawi, as far as the eye can see, there are no trees.
At today’s rate, Malawi will have no trees by 2079.
A lifetime of seeing trees disappear and the subsequent struggle that results, gave us a clear path to combat climate change. We are now seeing the power of empowering communities to re-grow lost forests.
Together - Tilitonse - we can buy the planet time, lift people out of poverty and plant trees to address the 8,000kgs per person per year of carbon dioxide we emit.
What we do ticks a lot of boxes through one simple concept.
Give people across the world the key to empowering each other, breaking down barriers, igniting a passion for change and making the planet a healthier, safer place.
So how do you know trees are actually being planted?
This year we are doing something different, something wild.
We’ve devised a one-of-a-kind solution, to keep you connected and aligned with our tree planting mission.
We are going to lift the lid on our tree-planting project and involve you every-step of the way.
You will be part of an intimate group of supporters, with exclusive access to the team on the ground. You will get an over-the-shoulder view of how we run the Tree Project.
Experience the highs and the lows.
The real stuff.
Become “Rooted”, a community of like-minded monthly supporters, who are unassuming eco-conscious warriors and everyday heroes.
A community who advocate for a better, healthier planet. A group of people that support rural families, living on less than £1 a day to find financial freedom in growing sustainable forests.
Giving monthly to offset their carbon footprints, in exchange for improving the livelihoods of families in rural Malawi through the Tree Project.
You have the unique opportunity to release people of their daily stress, anxiety and poverty in Malawi, and in return, families in Malawi enable you to live carbon negative.
How does it work?
You give a monthly donation to plant trees and join our online global “Rooted” community- for the first time.
Then on the ground, we partner with communities and the year’s planting programme is set in motion. We get specific about this in a few moments.
Each month there will be a live webinar hosted by Joe/Augustine. They will brief on tree planting that month and share any significant events. The floor will then be open to Q&A.
If you can't make the meeting, you will receive a recording and summary email catching up on the month's activities.
It is an in-depth - never done before - insight into how a project works on the ground in Malawi.
Protecting Rivers & Mountains
Schools, Villages & Prisons
Planting Native Trees
Meet Joe & Augustine.
Joe's passion for trees started as a child, walking through Welsh forests with his grandmother searching for elephant hawk moths and King Alfred fungi; she was an inspirational nature lover.
Augustine's passion started when he had an "aha" moment in Muuzana village, a community transformed beyond recognition by the project.
Both men have worked on development projects and programmes for over a decade in rural Malawi. Together they have pioneered the changes we see in communities around us. Attitudes towards nature, biodiversity, and land protection have done a one-eighty in a relatively short period.
The success we have seen in the project isn't through the mass planting of trees and arbitrary numbers. But through hard-won relationships with hundreds of people, prisoners, families and children who want more for their country and their lives.
We are set for 2024 to be a BIG year
So far, we have helped over 250 communities plant over 450,000 trees.
In 2024, with your help, we can plant 100,000 more.
By joining Rooted, you will be a part of an intimate community of monthly donors. Once a month, you have unfiltered access to an online meeting with Joe/Augustine - a chance to talk about the month’s activities, ask questions and go live with Augustine from the top of mountains and along river banks.
By investing in Rooted, you are planting hundreds and thousands of trees, going over and above your own carbon footprint.
Tilitonse - together - we will achieve a cross-continent mindset shift, deliver life-changing education and plant sustainable forests that last.
The Rooted Experience
In joining Rooted you will invest in the livelihoods of hundreds of communities, PLUS the added bonus of offsetting your carbon footprint. You will receive:
Online Rooted meetings each month, you have direct access to us as we run projects in Malawi and update you. You can walk alongside us to ask questions, laugh, and share joy and sadness. We are stewarding your generosity and donations and, therefore, are accountable to you; we take that seriously.
Exclusive interviews with community members, changed by the investment you've made.
Your monthly Rooted email will 1) Provide a high-level overview of the month's project impact. So you know exactly what is going on and who's who and what's what 2) A family impact story.
Exclusive BONUS videos - you can be a fly on the wall in some of Malawi's project sessions. The videos give a sneak peek into the workshops we deliver. You will no longer be wondering what it is like at the grassroots level, but will have a real tangible insight into the project.
A Tree Twinning bauble each Christmas.
In 2020, Dalitso (pictured) joined the Tree Project. He was provided with seedlings to plant fruit trees by Fishermen’s Rest. That same year papaya trees began to produce fruit for Dalitso. This fruit has provided him and his family with many benefits.
Having his own papaya trees means the family’s diet is improved, the trees produce a lot of fruit all year round so they have access to the nutritional benefits most of the time. For their family, social gatherings have become easier as they can provide friends with fruit when they come to visit.
What do the numbers look like, how many trees do you need to plant to be effective?
You will become a font of knowledge, a specialist in sustainability and Malawi's trees.
Those feelings of helplessness can melt away with the real-life stories of hope and change you hear from Malawi. Enough to warm the soul and put meaning back into the carbon-consuming daily grind.
Any apathy and twangs of guilt you once experienced, can become a thing of the past - because you are an active member of change. You enable the building of sustainable forests, hand in hand with the people whose land the trees grow on.
This project is a team effort. You are a part of a community wanting to change the world.
And who knows, a personal relationship with the team in Malawi and deep knowledge of the programme, may just inspire you to visit one day…
And you would be so welcome!
This project is about supporting people. But as you are planting trees, you will have questions about carbon sequestering. An average tree sequesters 10kg of carbon per year.*
The UN says an average person in the UK emits 25 tonnes of carbon per year, but you could be emitting up to 110 tonnes (other sites say less, but we don't want to underestimate).
To start growing trees and make leaps in social and environmental change in Malawi, you can choose a sum upwards from £50/month to gain access to Rooted. Over time you will be supporting hundreds of families in Malawi, helping to break generational poverty cycles.
50 trees/month: £50 Partners with 3 families each year. Sequesters an average of 500 kg/month of carbon year on year
100 trees/month: £100 Partners with 6 families each year. Sequesters an average 1,000 kg/month of carbon year on year
200 trees/month: £200 Partners with 12 families each year. Sequesters an average 2,000 kg/month of carbon year on year
*Carbon offsetting numbers are wildly different and controversial, so how did we figure these numbers out? Have a read in our FAQs. These numbers are a guide, it can take longer for some trees to sequester the above carbon, so we have been conservative with our numbers. Over a few years the trees you cumulatively plant will more than offset your carbon, and your focus in the programme will be sustainable and transformational global change.
We are only welcoming our network of existing supporters and email list, to launch the programme.
As we expand and donations increase, there are three non-negotiables we HAVE to get right:
1. We must grow at a pace where our team remains trained to a high standard, and partnering families in Malawi joining the project are well supported.
2. We need to get our reporting right, and you will be vital in helping us shape and develop reporting that answers what you want to know.
3. We maintain our capacity to monitor the trees as they grow.
If you join Rooted this year, you are an integral piece of our movement to stand for community-owned forests. Our mission in Malawi is simple, help everyone and anyone grow diverse trees, protect land and sink carbon.
One question remains, are you going to be with us?
As soon as you set up your monthly donation, we don’t beat around the bush, it is put to work straight away. Within no time at all, you will have started to help families in Malawi journey out of poverty.
As a result, we cannot offer refunds. However, we do offer a 30-day cooling-off period for the first donation.
You can cancel your monthly giving at any time, but you will lose access to our monthly calls, emails and future bonuses.
How do I donate? You click through to Join Here button, at which point you will be asked how much you’d like to donate. Select your chosen amount and click through to the secure payment section.
Jenifer (pictured) a community tree farmer, received tree seedlings a few years ago. She planted these in an area of her land where the soil wasn’t good for growing crops.
Before she had trees, her land had become infertile and produced a poor crop. She now saves money on firewood, as she coppices her own trees. The trees also protect her home from big winds and have made it more beautiful.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why should I donate to you?
With funds over the years we have planted over 450,000 trees, in 250 communities, developing the successful project model we are now confident to expand with.
Trees planted 9 years ago are now above head height, shade providers and fruit givers. As little as five years ago many forests did not exist in the surrounding landscape. Today you will see trees.
To date, we have run extensive pilot projects with families. We have spent years of trial and error testing out what works. We need our forests to be sustainable. We need to figure out ways humans, trees and animals can co-exist in limited spaces. What we do is miles ahead of current “mainstream” projects and programmes, we align with research into how to make forests last and become sustainable for the future.
I can plant trees cheaper elsewhere, why should I support your trees?
If the trees at £1 are too expensive, then please give your hard-earned money to another organisation. Who will be implementing a mass planting programme and can therefore charge much less per tree. We are in the business of lasting generational change, bringing hope to people worst affected by climate change, but ALSO changing the lives of the people who’s land they are planted on.
If the cost is too high, there may be ways you can modify your lifestyle to bring your carbon emissions down - if you want to live at NET Zero. We love that too and will be cheering you on in your efforts!
Alternatively, if you feel you want to support the project, but can’t give as much right now, please give on a monthly basis what you can afford via our website.
Can I get a refund?
In short, no. But we do offer a 30-day cooling-off period before you make your first donation. You can cancel your monthly donations at any time. Please note that you will no longer be able to access the Rooted community benefits.
How do I figure out all this technical payment information?
Simply click here and you’ll head down this page to our safe and secure order form. Immediately after filling out the form and setting up your direct debit, you’ll receive an automatic confirmation email and a member of the team will be reaching out to you to welcome you to the Rooted community.
If you have any questions at all, email anytime or contact our UK charity phone number. We’re on standby ready to help.
Alternatively, email firstname.lastname@example.org and we can set you up manually over email.
How do you calculate how much carbon a tree can absorb?
As you can well imagine, different species of tree, at different ages, in different locations, can all sequester carbon at different rates. Younger trees absorb more carbon rapidly, whilst older trees safely store masses of carbon. We have used a comprehensive article written by One Tree Planted, using their data collected in forests across the world.
Their estimation is based on 1,000 trees per hectare and errs on the side of caution. At 10kg per year for the first twenty years, it is less than half the generally cited 21kgs/ year on other websites. However, this number has no backing, that we can find and is arbitrary. We prefer to join the side of caution and say 10kg of carbon on average is absorbed per year per tree.
If you want approved, verified and regulated carbon-offset certificates, there are some great organisations out there! Our priority is impacting communities, changing lives and focusing on socially sustainable change.
Why does your website say “FROM WALES” when you are the Tree Project?
FROM WALES is the registered umbrella charity in the UK for the Tree Project. As an organisation, we support education programmes in schools, water programmes, tree programmes and young adolescent programmes.
What happens if I don’t have time to join a monthly meeting?
If you cannot join the monthly meeting, then you will receive an email with a summary of the meeting, the monthly updates and links to any additional resources, videos or interviews that take place.
Immediately after filling out the form below, powered by Donorbox and setting up your direct debit, you’ll receive an automatic confirmation email and a member of the team will be reaching out to you to welcome you to the Rooted community.