Maathai, Wangari (1940–)

Wangari maathai was born in Nyeri, Kenya. She was trained in biological sciences and pursued doctoral studies in Germany and Nairobi, becoming the first Kenyan woman to receive a Ph.D. In 1977 she founded the Green Belt Movement. This initiative responded to the needs of local women for firewood, clean drinking water, balanced diets, shelter, and income, which they had been unable to meet due to continuous environmental degradation, replacement of household crops by commercial farming, and declining income due to distorted world market prices for Kenyan commodities. The program began with the planting of nine trees in Maathai's own backyard and resulted in a citizen education program that led to the planting of more than 30 million trees that survived all over Kenya, and ...

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