Wangari Maathai honored as a 'Master of Humanity' in Italy

March 18, 2019

The Mayor of Milan, Giuseppe Sala, led the event where Professor Maathai was honored for her contributions in the environment sector through her work with the Green Belt Movement.

“This is a Day that celebrated the human beings and their capacity to do good deeds – highlighted Milan’s Mayor Giuseppe Sala in his opening remarks. All these young people make this corner of Milan even more beautiful. And the Garden of the Righteous projects Milan into the future. An antifascist, pragmatic and generous town, which can offer assistance: a model of tolerance”.

Speaking at the event, Rahab Wanjiru Mwatha, Green Belt Movement International Europe, and great friend of Maathai. “Wangari often told people “Don’t forget to smile and laugh every day, even when times are hard"... She would tell me when I was going through a tough period: "Problems that you are experiencing now are like a river - They are "just passing and flowing by". The Green Belt Movement encouraged the women to work together to grow seedlings and plant trees to bind the soil, store rainwater, provide food and firewood, and receive a small monetary token of appreciation for their work. Today, in part because of the Green Belt Movement’s own work, we understand much more completely the linkage between deforestation, governance and peace, about how these three pillars form the foundation for sustainable development”.