Wildfires, pandemic, heat waves, floods, etc. Are these anomalies a sign that nature is taking revenge for all the damage we as humans have caused? This is a question that Donia El Himer, an employee of the Cité Maraîchère of Romainville asks herself.
The Cité Maraîchère of Romainville is a vertical indoor farm that provides the residents of the city with chemical-free fruits and vegetables. The employees form part of a professional integration project carried out by the municipality. They didn’t have any professional experience in this field. However, through various workshops, they learned quite a lot about gardening, waste sorting, compost, food sustainability and other environmental themes. Even though their lifestyle didn’t change after working here because they already used to carry out ecological actions in their homes, the knowledge that they gained helped them get a better understanding of nature and become more aware of the environmental challenges.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report of 2022 highlights the urgency of tackling climate change. According to this report, climate change has aggravated food and water insecurity and caused extreme weather disasters like heat waves, wildfires, hurricanes, droughts, and floods. It has even affected the physical and mental health of many. There is also the loss of species and extinctions.
We need to adapt to the situation. The environment is now an essential factor that we need to take in consideration before doing anything. Therefore, we need to educate ourselves on the environment to fight the climate crisis. Education is the key to finding solutions to fight against the catastrophe that awaits us.
The Cité Maraîchère raises awareness on the climate crisis by offering educational workshops to each age group on various environmental themes such as nature in the city, eco-citizenship, gardening, food sustainability, etc. It gives you the keys to lead a sustainable life that doesn’t harm the environment. For instant, people can come here to learn about composting. For the food lovers, there are cooking workshops where you can learn how to cook sustainably. If you more of an artist, you can go there to create jewellery amongst other things from used or recovered objects.
The vertical farm proposes various gardening activities like making insect houses to the public. After attending a gardening workshop there, you gain enough knowledge to grow your garden at home. They even introduce gardening children. This activity is an excellent way too connect with nature and is very beneficial for the Earth. An organic garden improves soil and air quality. It helps mitigate global warming that is caused by an excess of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide that trap heat in the atmosphere. Plants help by taking in carbon dioxide and producing oxygen. Furthermore, introducing children from a young age to plants will make them respect our planet more as they will understand the importance of plants from childhood.
During the visits and the workshops at the vertical farm, people are curious and want to learn more. Some even say that doing the different gardening activities at the urban farm makes them want to do gardening in their own home. This proves that maybe people who might not be interested in nature at first can also convert themselves into nature lovers.
The Cité Maraîchère of Romainville through their different workshops gives people the opportunity to reconnect with nature. This is exactly what we need to do in order to attack global warming. To save our beloved planet we need to connect with her. We need to understand her works in an effort to better protect her.