The people behind the project

The Laudato Tree Project was initiated by the Society of African Missions (SMA) as a living legacy to Pope Francis’ environmental encyclical Laudato Si’.

The Society of African Missions is an international community of Catholic missionaries who serve the people of Africa and people of African descent around the world. SMA stands for our official name: Society of African Missions. People often ask, then why SMA and not SAM? The initials refer to the name in Latin: Societas Missionum ad Afros. The SMA was founded at Lyons (France) in 1856 by Mgr Melchior de Marion Brésillac. For more information about the SMA and its work visit the SMA website by clicking here.

Inaugurated in 2018 by the President of Ireland, the project’s partners include the UNCCD (United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification), The Tree Council of Ireland, ORGIIS and Aduna.

ORGIIS staff planting trees with a local Community in Burkina Faso.
ORGIIS staff planting trees with a local Community in Burkina Faso.

About the project

The Laudato Tree Project is an Irish contribution to the Great Green Wall – an incredible global initiative to plant 8,000km of trees, spanning 13 countries, right across Africa. It also looks to increase the number of trees here in Ireland, a country with the lowest forest coverage levels in Europe.

Inaugurated by Irish President Michael D Higgins in 2018, the project takes its name from a 2015 papal encyclical by Pope Francis called the Laudato Si’. Focused on Caring for Our Common Home the Laudato Tree Project is intended to be a visible expression of the encyclical’s aims and intentions.

President Michael D Higgins and Monique Barbut (UNCCD) at the inauguration of the Laudato Tree Project.
President Michael D Higgins and Monique Barbut (UNCCD) at the inauguration of the Laudato Tree Project.

How you can help

Every €20 we receive will contribute to planting 1 tree in Ireland and up to 5 trees on Great Green Wall Projects in Africa. Your donation will also go towards training guardian communities who will plant and take care of the trees for future generations.

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