Takunda Mapiro is 8 years old and passionate about the environment and climate change. During COVID-19, he has been doing online schooling during which his Grade 3 class learned about national tree planting day, held annually on the first Saturday of December in Zimbabwe. At the same time, Takunda has also been learning about World AIDS Day, an annual commemoration and celebration of those affected by HIV and all the progress which has been made.
In planting his tree, Takunda said “I wanted to plant a tree so that we don’t forget the young people who have died. People can watch the tree grow and remember everyone that died. But also we can come and celebrate all the young people at Zvandiri who have done so much. The tree is a peach tree so hopefully, it will produce delicious peaches. The tree reminds us all that trees are so important. We should not be cutting down trees. We should all be planting trees instead.”
The tree planting event was particularly memorable as Takunda was joined by five formidable young women from Zvandiri. This team of young women are all living with HIV and have advocated for paediatric and adolescent HIV services at the highest levels. Takunda and Loyce Maturu first gave their remarks which was followed by the tree planting and a minute of silence. This was a fabulous opportunity for Takunda to be supported, learn from and be inspired by other youth advocates. To find out more about Takunda’s interests and see some of his videos, please do subscribe to his new blog which he learned how to develop during lockdown.