Nature trip for international students spurred interest in environment protection
By: NORASHIKIN SULAIMAN, INTERNATIONAL OFFICE
Thirty Universiti Malaysia Pahang (UMP) international students took time off to be volunteers in a community programme involving environment protection activities at the popular Cherating beach belt in Kuantan recently.
The students were from Bangladesh, China, Egypt, India, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, Sudan, Somalia and Yemen.
The programme, ‘Love the Nature’, was organised by UMP International Office that was held on October 27, 2018.
They went on a cruise along the Cherating River to enjoy the scenic landscape of mangrove and the creatures that lived in the area.
After soaking in the tranquillity experience of the 45-minute cruise that was managed by Hafiz’s Cherating Activities, the students proceeded to Kuala Sungai Cherating and took part in the planting of mangrove tree saplings.
International Office Director, Dr. Nik Aloesnita Nik Mohd. Alwi said the programme gave the students the opportunity to enjoy and appreciate nature and at the same time, help to conserve the environment by planting 50 tree saplings
“They were given briefing on the function and importance of the trees. The protruding roots allow sediment to accumulate. Mangrove also protects the shoreline from erosion and is a natural guard against strong wind.
“They were also taken to the Turtle Sanctuary Centre at Chendor beach. They learned about the many species available in Malaysia and the need to protect the turtles from extinction,” she said.
She added that the activity was organised at Rimbun Dahan by Pak Su Cherating, a non-governmental organisation that was actively involved in turtle conservation programmes in Pahang.
As part of the efforts to create awareness on protecting the turtles and the habitat, the students got to release 30 baby turtles or hatchlings to the sea.
One of the participants, Abdelrahman Elsaid who is from Egypt, said although the weather was hot, he was very happy to be part of the programme and that it was his first time participating in such an activity.
He said he was proud to have done his bit to conserve the environment by planting the mangrove tree saplings.
“We also got to see the fireflies along the Cherating River which was a beautiful sight, which surely was a memorable one, something good to bring home after I have completed my studies,” he said.