Hundreds of volunteers gave their contribution to the conservation of the environment in the Ofeliite area in Vitosha Mountain.
On September 10th 2016, Vitosha Nature Park became the home of the second forest planted within the My Green City initiative. Hundreds of volunteers joined the ninth consecutive edition of the eco-campaign under the motto “Be Green Not Only for a Day” organized by Coca-Cola Bulgaria, Ecopack Bulgaria, and the Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds (BSPB), with the support of South-Western State Enterprise, Sofia State Forestry and Vitosha Nature Park.
The event was officially launched by Krasimir Zhivkov, Deputy Minister of Environment and Water, Irena Pekova, Executive Director of the Regional Environment and Water Inspectorate, Damyan Damyanov, Director of South-Western State Enterprise, Lorita Radeva, Chair of the Environmental Protection, Agriculture, and Forestry Committee with Sofia Municipality, Todor Bourgoudjiev, Executive Director of ECOPACK, and Svetoslav Atanasov, CEO of Coca-Cola HBC Bulgaria.
With joint efforts, the participants in My Green City planted 350 saplings, revamped existing recreation facilities and installed new ones in one of Vitosha Mountain’s most beautiful areas – Ofeliite, thus making their own contribution towards the expansion of forest cover and conservation of the environment. Thus, after the first forest created within the initiative became a fact in Bankya in 2015, this year the eco-campaign sustained its focus on forest planting and rehabilitation. On the 10th of September 2016, 250 spruce trees and 100 young birches became part of My Green City’s second forest, which today spreads over a 3-decare area deforested as a result of bark beetle damage in Vitosha Nature Park.
The rain did not stop even the youngest from joining in. After helping their parents, hundreds of kids eagerly took part in the specially organized educational games and workshops dedicated to biodiversity and forest conservation. As partner to the initiative, Ecopack Bulgaria set up its Eco Labyrinth where visitors could learn interesting facts about recycling and the preservation of the environment and see a special photo exhibition featuring interesting information about protected animal species and plants in Bulgaria. And while their parents were cleaning up and restoring the hiking trails damaged by heavy rainfall, the young amateur ecologists took part in an interactive photography workshop dedicated to the beautiful sights and diverse flora of Vitosha Nature Park.
In 2016, the ninth consecutive edition of My Green City brought together 16 locations across Bulgaria under the motto “Be Green Not Only for a Day”. During the campaign, volunteers from the whole country joined various locally organized, forest maintenance and clean-up activities in Bourgas, Varna, Veliko Turnovo, Vratsa, Gabrovo, Dobritch, Pernik, Pleven, Plovdiv, Russe, Sliven, Smolyan, Sofia, Stara Zagora, Turgovishte, Haskovo, to make their city a cleaner and better place to live in.
More about “My Green City”:
The “My Green City” initiative began in 2008 and its main goal is to help preserve nature in the city. The campaign is organized by Coca-Cola HBC Bulgaria in partnership with the Bulgarian Society for the Protection of Birds and Ecopack Bulgaria. It aims to promote care for the environment as an inherent part of everyday life of each individual and of society as a whole.
Through the years My Green City has drawn the support of many NGOs, official partners, and thousands of volunteers. As a result of their efforts up to now, nearly 2 km of Sofia’s Perlovska River have been cleaned up, 16,000 kg of CO2 have been saved, 2,500 bags of recyclable waste materials have been collected, more than 350 trees have been planted, and more than 300 benches, children’s play and recreation facilities have been installed or renovated in 23 towns across Bulgaria.
2015 was marked by the creation of the first forest within the initiative, and on 10th September 2016, Vitosha Nature Park became home to 350 young trees planted on a 3-decare area deforested as a result of bark beetle damage.