A comprehensive story of our Honorable Patron - Madam Yi Jiefang
This webpage is in both English and Chinese. 這是英文和中文雙語網頁
Hope is on the Earth: the story of a mother of earth
易解放女士，一位失去兒子的母親，在荒漠種樹延長兒子的生命。十年間，她捐出爱子杨睿哲的人壽保險金和事故賠償金，她幾乎花光自己所有的資產，還賣掉了兩套房產，帶領廣大志願者和聘請農民在內蒙古荒漠種下了 150 萬棵樹，讓1萬3千畝沙地變成綠洲。
“When alive, you stand strong against sandstorms; when fallened, you burn yourself to give light and warmth to others.”
Madam Yi Jiefang (易解放), a mother who lost her son, Yang Ruizhe (杨睿哲), in a road accident, has been extending her son’s life by fulfilling his ’s wish of planting trees in the desert. Over the past ten years, she has donated her son’s life insurance and accident compensation , and used the money from selling her own properties, including selling her two houses, on a project of planting trees in an Inner Mongolia desert. She led volunteers from different countries and employed local peasants to plant 1.5 million trees and turned 13,000 mu (8.67 million square meters) of desert into green land.
Note: mu (畝) is a Chinese unit of measurement of area: 3 mu = 2000 square meters, 1 mu ~= 667 square meters.
She launched the “Million Moms, Million Trees” campaign. She urges all moms on the Earth that to love kids, we need not only leave houses, cars and money to them; more importantly, we need to leave a good living environment of green land, blue sky, clear water, etc.
Her effort has been appreciated by many people and organizations. She has received many awards and honors, among them, she has notably received:
- UN Women cum Netease's top ten female role models award 2011
- the 10 Best Female Individuals Award of the First National Female Philanthropists Awards in 2011
但是她沒有在榮譽面前止步，她把上百萬的獎金都捐種了樹，她還算了一道數學題告訴我們一個最簡單的環保公式：中国13亿人，每人每年捐50元種5棵樹，三年後，沙漠的植被率就能達到 50 %，我們就可告別沙塵暴！
Receiving awards is not just an honor, it helps her endeavor – she has donated the awards of almost RMB $1,000,000 to planting trees. She tells us a simple environmental equation: If everyone of the 1.3 billion Chinese population donates RMB $50 to plant 5 trees a year, in three years’ time, all the deserts in China will have 50% vegetation cover and we can say goodbye to sandstorms!
第一章: 2000年 – 為什麼 ？
Chapter 1: Year 2000 – why？
易解放女士 : 家裡有一隻壞了的錶，是兒子的，發生車禍之後留下來的，它永遠就定在這個時候，2000年的5月22日早上9時20分，他的生命就永遠停止在這裡，生命被定格！
Madam Yi JieFang said, “There is a broken watch in my home, left behind by my son after a car accident. It froze at 9:20 am on May 22, 2000; his life ended at that moment.”
Madam Yi went to Japan from Shanghai when she was 38. After years of hard work, she and her husband, Mr. Yang Antai, finally settled down in Japan. Her son, Yang Ruizhe, went to Japan when he was 13. After graduating from high school, he was admitted to the prestigious Chuo University in Japan majoring in Commerce and Accounting. He was the pride of his parents. Like many immigrant families, the Yang family lived a hard-working and stable life. However, they did not expect the imminent disaster that was to devastate the family.
2000年5月22日早上兒子騎摩托車照常去上學，臨走時還跟母親說好中午回家，但那一天之後兒子再沒有回家。易女士剛上班不久，接到通知，兒子發生車 禍，她的上司及主管陪着她到醫院，醫生盡了力搶救兩小時無效，她不肯放棄，呼天搶地的哭，要幫他做人工呼吸，抱着他，他身體仍是暖的，想把他叫回來。安慰 的說話，一句也聽不進去。兒子蠟黄的臉，眼睛也沒閉上，好像在對她說：媽媽，我今天闖禍了，回不去了，非常無奈的表情。
On the morning of May 22, 2000, Yang Ruizhe rode a motorcycle to school as usual. Before leaving, he told his mother that he would come home at noon, but he never did. Madam Yi had just gone to work when she received the news that his son was involved in a car accident. After 2 hours of attempting to save his life , the doctors announced her son’s death. But she refused to give up, screaming and crying, trying to do artificial respiration…… His body was still warm, and she wanted him back. None of the comforting words made sense to her. With a sallow face, and eyes opened, the body was as if saying to her in an expression of helplessness, “Mom, I got into trouble. I will never come back again.”
一個年輕，前途美好的青年，一個美滿的三口之家，易女士在日本打拼的希望和意義，在頃刻間坍塌，在以後的一段很長很長時間，夫婦倆無法面對兒子不能回來的 現實。兒子過世三個月左右時，是最痛苦的。有好幾次下了班，怕一人回家，跟丈夫在車站等，大家一起回來，滿屋都是兒子生前的東西，他的書，他的衣服，他的 房間仍和以前一樣，但是家裡就是沒有了兒子這個人。踩着樓梯上來的台階聲，聽到似是兒子的脚步聲，總以為她兒子回來了，但是多少次都失望，很失落。在星期 六、日，她丈夫在醫院工作比較忙，她一人在家，她會在兒子靈台前哭泣，她關上門，把電視機開到好大聲，不想鄰居聽到她的哭聲。
A youth with a good future and a happy family of three was suddenly ruined. The aim and the hope that sustained Madam Yi to work hard in Japan collapsed. For a long long period, the parents could not face the reality that their son would never come back. It was most painful in the first three months. Loneliness was difficult to bear. For several times, Madam Yi was afraid of returning home herself after work. She would wait for her husband at the station and return home together. The house was full of the son’s relics, his books, his clothes, his room, but without him. When someone stepped on the stairs, if it sound like her son’s steps, she thought that her son was coming back, but every time she despaired. On Saturday and Sunday, when her husband was busy working at hospital, she would be alone at home. Sometimes, she would cry loudly for a long time. She would also turn on the TV loudly, so that her neighbors would not hear her crying.
It was very sad that disaster struck, the son died, the family disintegrated, and everywhere seemed to be dark. When a close family member dies, what determines a person to be desperate or to be strong? This is a process that tests a person. Choosing is difficult. Why can she eventually bravely stand up to live again?
那是一段黑暗的日子，在最艱難困苦時，她在日本的同事和朋友給了她莫大的安慰。很多平時要好的同事，都不敢跟她說話了，因為只要她們問一句身體好嗎，易女 士的眼淚就流下來；但大家都想鼓勵她，年輕的會約她出去談天，同齡的部長們輪流安慰她，到星期天休息日到她家探望、安慰，陪她聊天，甚至說如她想哭，叫她 在她們肩上爽爽快快的哭吧，哭到哭不出為止。有同事把雀仔及流水聲錄了給她聽，作為她兒子唱歌給她聽。
That was the darkest and hardest period for her. Her colleagues and friends in Japan gave her great comfort. The colleagues who were usually close to her, dared not speak to her, for as soon as they asked if she was better, Madam Yi’s tears would stream down. Nevertheless, everyone wanted to encourage her, the young would ask her out, while her peer department heads took turns to comfort her. They visited her home on Sundays, to comfort her and chat with her. They even said that if she wanted to cry, cry on their shoulders until no more tears could be shed. Some colleagues recorded the chirping of birds and the sounds of flowing water to her, telling her that these are voices of her son right now.
在兒子過世後四個月，易女士帶著兒子的骨灰和照片，來到了歐洲。他很喜歡歐洲中世紀文學和歴史，生前連一次巴黎也未去過，所以她就帶著他的小骨灰盒去了法 國巴黎、比利時的布魯塞爾、羅馬、梵蒂岡、弗洛倫薩、威尼斯，米蘭，德國的柏林。她帶著兒子去了好多地方；我們中國人有忘諱，她帶著兒子的骨灰，人們 就避開她，外國人沒有避開她，他們給她拍照，甚至幫忙拿著，還安慰她，不認識的人，他們陪著她一起吃飯，怕她寂寞、難過。
Four months after the death of her son, Madam Yi went to Europe, bringing her son's ashes and photos with her. He liked European medieval literature and History, but he had not been to Europe during his lifetime. So she brought his son’s cinerary casket to Paris, Brussels, Rome, Vatican City, Florence, Venice, Milan and Berlin. She took her son to a lot of places. Bringing someone’s ashes around was a taboo for the Chinese, so Chinese people avoided her, but western people did not. They took photos for her, and some comforted her. Some strangers even dined with her, afraid that she was lonely and sad.
一天來到法國羅浮宮為兒子拍照時，遭到工作人員阻止，說這裡不能拍照，這時一個歐洲旅行團過來，易女士意外地得到其他人的幫助；十幾個歐洲婦女看了她問明 原因，知道易女士兒子因交通事故離開了她，有些人馬上流下淚來，批評工作人員冷漠。又幫忙為她及兒子骨灰盒和照片拍照。拍她肩膀安慰她，說她的兒子這麽英 俊，在天國一定是天使呢。易女士覺得非常感動，感人的母愛，好像不用語言，也沒有國界之分，一個人類共同的感受：一個母親懷念她英年早逝的兒子之情，到那 裡都能得到同情，都能得到支持。
One day, Madam Yi arrived at the Louvre to take photos of the paintings with his son’s cinerary casket, but she was prevented to do so by the staff there. Meanwhile, a European tour group came over and Madam Yi unexpectedly received help from them – A dozen European women saw the commotion and asked her what had happened. After knowing that Madam Yi’s son had died in a car accident, they were moved, some even shed tears, and they criticized the staff for being cold-hearted. They helped her take photos of her son's casket with the paintings. They patted her shoulder to comfort her, and said that her son is so handsome and must be an angel in heaven. Madam Yi was deeply moved. She realized that motherly love was not separated by language or nationality. It is a common sentiment: sympathy and support are always by the side of a mother whose son died an untimely death.
歐洲的旅程令易女士釋懷，經過一年多的調整，這個母親才慢慢從傷痛中走出來，開始仔細整理孩子的遺物。整理的過程，也是梳理自己心緒的時候，漸漸地在腦中 分明起來，想起兒子曾說過，大學畢業以後要為中日經濟作出貢獻，談到沙塵暴的問題，要在中國大規模植樹的事也想起來，易女士想兒子既然有這個想法，她本來 是個比較堅強的人，她不能這樣窩囊廢的、哭哭啼啼的，做一個無所事事的母親，他一定不喜歡她這樣，因為兒子在生時曾說他是很尊敬她的。愛兒曾建議媽媽退休 後回國植樹冶沙，并且表示：〝我們要幹就幹大的〞。
The Europe trip was a healing journey for madam Yi. After a year of adjustment, she slowly recuperated and began sorting out her child’s possessions. During the process, she also sorted out her own state of mind. Her thoughts cleared up gradually. She was a strong woman. She knew that she could not sit idly, crying every day. Her son, who respected her very much, would want her to move on. She remembered that her son once said that he wished to contribute to the Sino-Japanese economy after graduating from university and he would like to do something against sandstorms. Her son had suggested that she returned to China after retirement to plant trees, and he had said that, “If we want to do something, then we do it big.” Madam Yi thus decided to continue her son’s dream.
In 2002, Madam Yi went back and forth between Japan and Shanghai, and started organizing the non-profit organization “NPO-Green Life”.
第二章： 2003年 – 為了治理沙塵暴，植樹造林
Chapter 2: Year 2003 – Set Off to Planting Trees and Afforestation to Control Sandstorms
為了實現唯一的兒子的遺願，易女士謝絕了公司的挽留，辭去工作，拿出兒子25 萬元〝人壽保險金〞作為啟動基金，成立了一個〝特定非營利活動法人綠色生命〞〔以下簡稱 NPO綠色生命〕的公益組織。她到內蒙古自治區通遼市庫倫旗內號稱〝死亡之海〞塔敏查干沙漠(科爾沁草原)、阿拉善沙漠考察，行程近8000公里，立下宏 願，并同當地政府簽定第一个協議，用 10 年時間，在該地區嚴重沙化的一萬畝沙地上種植 110 萬棵樹的奮鬥目標；植樹資金由NPO綠色生命募集提供，當地政府協同管理樹木的成長；植樹後20年內不准砍伐，20年後所有樹木無償捐贈給當地牧民。那 時，支持她的朋友，僅僅是出於要幫助一個失去兒子的母親走出絕望，他們也不知道她到底能走多遠。
To realize the wish of her deceased son, Madam Yi resigned her job and declined her company’s request of wishing her stay. She used RMB$250,000 out of the life insurance of her son as a start-up fund to set up a non-profit organization “NPO-Greenlife”. She embarked on a 8000km journey in Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region and visited the Desert of Taminzhagan (formerly the Horqin grassland area), a desert called notoriously "the Sea of Death" by locals in Kulunqi district of Tongliao city, and the Desert of Alashan. Afterward, she signed the first agreement with a local government:
- She set up the noble goal of planting 1.1 million trees in 10,000 mu (6.67 million square meters) of desert in 10 years with funding from NPO-Greenlife;
- the local government would manage the growth of the trees with her together;
- no felling of trees was allowed in 20 years; and
- after 20 years, all trees would be donated to the local people.
Then her friends were supporting her as a despaired mother who lost her son but they did not know how far she could go.
NPO-Greenlife (Non-Profit Organization Greenlife)
To raise funding for planting trees and for the operation of the organization and the endeavor, Madam Yi eventually spent all the life insurance and accident compensation of her son, sold two houses, and spent all her savings from working for 20 years in Japan. She devoted herself whole-heartedly in the endeavor of planting trees and raising funds, with the aim to turn the desert into green land.
In 2003, she chose an afforestation site in the Desert of Taminzhagan (formerly the Horqin grassland area) in Kulunqi, Inner Mongolia.
第三章： 2004年 – 植樹一萬棵 – 起動
Chapter 3: Year 2004 – Planting 10,000 trees – a start
On April 22, 2004, the first tree was planted in the afforestation site in the Desert of Taminzhagan, which is also called “400 kilometers of dry sea”. Madam Yi’s son died on May 22, 2000, what a coincidence that his mom planted the first tree on the 22nd day of a month.
Over 300 student volunteers and peasants joined the tree planting. Madam Yi represented NPO-Greenlife in organizing the tree planting. Many difficulties wereencountered – the site was remote; they had to walk for a half day to buy the saplings, transporting them over the difficult path to the sand dunes by humans and horses, and hired peasants to plant them. On the next day, the team went to examine, but found that the saplings were blown to the ground by the strong wind.
Photo: a cart of goods pulled by horses. Madam Yi is by the side.
They learnt that they need to dig a hole so that the saplings would be held firmly. It would be more efficient to use a tractor to dig a one meter deep trench, and then dig a deeper hole for each tree. Getting water from remote site was also a problem.
因為久旱無雨，無奈之下，選擇打井，但是成本很高。一口細細的塑管井就四五千 元，非常乾旱，缺水，打一口井就用了兩天，一口井衹夠灌一百畝地，澆水的速度跟不上蒸發的速度，第一批種植的一萬棵樹幾乎瀕臨死亡，就在小樹奄奄一息的時 候，幾乎十年春季沒下過雨的塔敏查干沙漠竟然下了幾天幾夜的雨，結果樹苗的成活率達到75 ％以上。
Since the land was dry, digging well was a solution. The cost was high. A very small plastic tube well required two days of digging and would cost RMB $4000-$5000. A well could provide water for an area of 100 mu (66,667 square meters). However, the rate of evaporation was very fast. The first batch of 10,000 trees nearly died due to dryness. Maybe it was a miracle or a Chinese proverb realized: “Heaven will help those with heart” – rain fell for several days and nights in the Desert of Taminzhagan which had not occurred in the spring seasons of the past 10 years! The result was 75% of the saplings survived.
Year 2004 plantation area [photo taken in 2010]
第四章： 2005年 – 植樹二萬棵 – 遭遇困難
Chapter 4: Year 2005 – Planting 20,000 trees – encounter difficulties
In April 2005, Madam Yi’s endeavor planted 20,000 poplar saplings. Luckily, during the planting period, it rained. The survival rate was above 75%.
Madam Yi’s team also tried planting 5000 wild apricot aplings. However, this kind of ancient tree did not survive in the hostile area.
樹木突然出現大面積死亡！種的樹可能不適合於沙漠種植；千辛萬苦籌來的資金眼睜睜消失在沙漠裡，要放棄嗎？放寬自己的心胸吧！易女士想，自己的孩子不在世 啦，沒法表達對他的愛，可以幫助其他的孩子，為了天下這麽多可愛的孩子，就做一個公益事業，為改善今後孩子的生活環境，目標漸漸清晰起來。易女士决定把自 已的儲蓄全拿出來，丈夫起初反對，因他倆自日本回國後，已沒有收入，坐食生崩。雖然已經用了很多錢，易女士最後决定堅持下去，因為這是她的事業，是自己生 命的一部份。易女士的丈夫也全心全意支持種樹的事業。
Madam Yi had to face the death of saplings over a large area. The tremendous hard work of fund raising vanished in this trial. Would she give up? She thought carefully – her son had gone; she could not express her love to him again; but there are so many lovely kids in the world, she would plant tree as a public welfare endeavor to build a better living environment. Her goal was clear. She decided to donate all her savings for tree planting. Her husband, Dr Yang, objected initially, because since they returned to China from Japan, they had no income. But Madam Yi persisted. This would be her endeavor, and had become part of her life. Dr Yang has ever since supported her whole-heartedly.
(Later, Madam Yi learned how to plant different kinds of saplings in different desert environments.)
第五章： 2006年 – 植樹三萬棵 – 艱苦經營
Chapter 5: Year 2006 – Planting 30,000 trees – working hard
In 2006, Madam Yi planted poplar saplings in spring and pine saplings in summer. A total of 30,000 saplings were planted. As the survival rate of pine was lower than 70%, the total survival rate was about 75%.
The target of planting a million trees in 10 years would mean about 100,000 trees each year. However, due to insufficient funds, only 60,000 trees were planted in the first three years.
Year 2005-2006 plantation area [photo taken in 2010]
第六章： 2007年 – 植樹三萬棵 – 只要功夫深，鐵杵磨成針
Chapter 6: Year 2007 – Planting 30,000 trees – if one works hard enough, one can grind an iron rod into a needle
From 2004 to 2006, only Madam Yi was running the planting endeavor and essentially no outside help was available. In 2005, Dr Yang and Mr Gaolin, a member of NPO-Greenlife, helped. In 2006, again only Madam was working on the endeavor.
Difficulties like standing against the sandstorm and loneliness were minor to Madam Yi. Her real worry was the running out of funding and manpower to plant trees. Many times she had thought about giving up, but once she recalled the unfulfilled wish of her son, she felt his force was supporting her, and this force made her journey lighter.
In 2007, all her savings and the life insurance and accident compensation of her son were spent. She sold her houses in Putong, Shanghai. In spring and summer she was planting trees while in autumn and winter she was travelling around to raise funds.
有一句話：只要功夫深，铁杵磨成针。易女士知道最起碼要三年，她準備堅持五年；2007 年是易女士植樹的第四個年頭，她的舉動贏得了致力於環境保護工作的民間組織，在這裡她得到很多年輕人的幫助；〝我終於有了生力軍〞而且是國際的，有加拿大 人，美國人，新加坡人，日本人，中國人，至少已經有五個國家的成員了。
There is a Chinese saying that if one works hard enough, one can grind an iron rod into a needle. Madam Yi knew that she had to persist for three to five years. 2007 was the fourth year of her endeavor. Her action had gained the support of non-government organizations working on environmental protection. A lot of young people came to help. “I finally had a new force”, she said. Moreover, the support was multi-national – besides Chinese, Americans, Canadians, Japanese and Singaporeans came to Inner Mongolia to help Madam Yi.
In April 2007, she brought a group of young volunteers of different ages, different occupations and coming from different countries to the afforestation site. These youths were used to living in cities. They for the first time realized that there was other kind of reality in life. In such hostile environment, planting trees was not just a burning passion, but it was related to the livelihood of the local people.
令人驚奇的，在沙漠如此惡劣的自然條件下，竟然還會有沙蟲。2007年夏天易女士陪同美國著名林業專家羅斯教授來到庫倫旗，羅斯教授多年來奔波於第三世 界，有豐富的沙地植樹造林實戰經驗，通遼市林業局專家也來了；他們指點了易女士及當地農牧民，怎樣治蟲防蟲，樹苗選用美國和通遼的楊樹雜交品種，生命力 強，成活率更高。
Surprisingly, in the harsh natural environment of the desert, worms can still live and destroy trees. In the summer of 2007, Madam Yi accompanied famous forestry expert Professor Ross to visit Kulunqi of Tongliao city. Professor Ross had been visiting third world countries and had good experience in afforestation in sandy ground. The experts from the Tongliao City Forestry Bureau also came. They showed Madam Yi and the local peasants how to prevent worms from destroying the trees, and by choosing the interbred poplar saplings from the United States and Tongliao, the survival rate would be much higher.
The original goal of planting trees was to fulfill the wish of her son. Now, the green land inside the desert signified many volunteers’ heart and effort. Madam Yi regarded that this had redefined her meaning of life, and her understanding of mother’s love.
易女士說：還記得在歐遊時，有一次，一個外國籍的媽媽，抱著一個很可愛的小女孩，那女孩跟我打招呼，當時我抱著我兒子的小骨灰盒，那女 士看著我羨慕的目光，問我要不要抱抱這個可愛的小女孩，我說好，太好啦！我有很久沒有這感覺了！抱著孩子的感覺太幸福了！雖然兒子走了，世上還有很多值得 我去愛的小孩，盡管他們不是我自己的孩子，為了那些還活著的、可愛的孩子，我願意去這樣做。如今，被稱為〝800裡旱海〞的科爾沁草原，有21 公頃荒漠已經逐漸被綠色覆蓋，10多萬棵樹苗正茁壯成長，人死不能復生，還能倖存的父母，是有任務的，兒子生前想做，他未能做到的，我作出一個不普通的決 定，去完成兒子未了的心願，來寄託對愛子全部的愛和思念。
Madam Yi recalled: “During a visit to Europe, I saw that a local mom was holding a cute little girl. The girl saidhello to me. At that time, I was holding a cinerary casket with the ashes of my son. The mom saw my admiration and asked me whether I would like to hug her girl. It was too good! I had not had this feeling of hugging a child for a long long time. It was such a fortunate and fulfilling feeling. Although my son had gone, many children are worthy of my love. I will continue to plant trees for those lovely living children. Now, 21 hectares of desert in the once called “400 kilometers of dry sea” of Horqin grassland has gradually been covered by green. Over 100,000 trees are growing well. While the dead could not be resuscitated, the living parents have the task to fulfill the son’s wish. I made an unusual decision – continue to plant trees to commemorate my love of my son.”
Year 2007 plantation area [photo taken in 2010]
In the first three years of the endeavor (2004 to 2006), only Madam Yi was planting trees. Starting from summer 2007, many youths came to help. The words of Madam Yi’s endeavor had spread!
Madam Yi used RMB $250,000 out of the life insurance of her son to build a Hope Primary School in the home town in Hunan Province of Lei Feng, a famous youth role model in China in the 1960’s. The School was named after her son, and later became a sister school with Yato Primary School of Nakano district of Tokyo, the primary school that her son attended in Japan.
In commemoration of her son, Yang Ruizhe, the people of Kulunqi established a monument which was engraved with the wording “You are a tree, whether you are alive or fallen, you are always a valuable asset. When alive, you stand strong against sandstorms; when fallen, you burn yourself to give light and warmth to others.”
The monument commemorating Madam Yi’s son Yang Ruizhe
set up by the people of Kulunqi
From 2007, the story of Madam Yi became more well-known. TV, newspapers and magazines in Shanghai started to report her tree planting stories. Donations started to improve. She also visited organizations, universities, secondary and primary schools and Japanese enterprises in China to promote the importance of tree planting in deserts and to solicit donations and volunteers. As a result, in spring and summer, 30,000 saplings were planted.
More and more organizations and volunteers joined the tree planting. The positive results encouraged Madam Yi. This reinforced her decision to take up planting trees as the career for the rest of her life.
(從2004 至2007 年共種九萬棵樹，成活率90％)
From 2004 to 2007, a total of 90,000 trees were planted and the survival rate was 90%.
第七章: 2008年 – 植樹 11.2萬棵 – 堅持帶來成果
Chapter 7: Year 2008 – Planting 112,000 trees – persistence brings results
On April 9, 2008, Madam Yi and 34 volunteers visited the Desert of Taminzhagan and witnessed the deterioration in the environment. This was a big shock to them and they deeply felt the importance of the promotion of environmental protection.
Madam Yi continued to work dedicatedly .
In 2008, the first major change came – Madam Yi received the honorary award of “100 Excellent Mothers in China”. Under the support of the All-China Women’s Federation, she set up the “Mothers' Green Project Fund” and promoted the “Million Moms, Million Trees” campaign which advocates mothers to donate RMB5 for planting a tree in the desert.
The many media reports brought more donations and volunteers to join Madam Yi in planting trees. The target of planting 112,000 trees was achieved and the survival rate reached 90%.
Year 2008 plantation area [photo taken in 2010]
[照片攝於2010年] [photo taken in 2010]
第八章： 2009年 – 植樹 30萬棵 – 造林的好處實現了
Chapter 8: Year 2009 – Planting 300,000 Trees – Benefits of afforestation realized
In 2009, a total of 300,000 trees were planted and the survival rate reached 85%.
With the support of various sectors in the communities, more than 500,000 trees were planted in 6 years from 2004-2009. The saplings planted in 2004 had grown to over 10 meters tall and those planted in 2005 had also grown to 7 to 8 meters tall. All of them had become forests.
Forests could resist sandstorms and retain ground water effectively. Peasants grew crops like soybean between the trees and sold them for money. With more rainfall, wild chickens also came back, and wild animals and birds returned to the Desert of Taminzhagan. Madam Yi now regarded that while it was very hard to plant trees in desert, it had become her responsibility to society, and it became more and more meaningful while seeing the homeland turned green.
塔敏查干沙漠，占地 280 平方公里，蒙古語稱〝魔鬼大沙漠〞，橫跨通遼、赤峰兩市，庫倫奈曼和科左后旗素有〝八百里旱海〞之稱，是中國東北地區第一大沙漠。這裡原來植被稀少，除其 腹地生長的黄柳條，沙嵩等植被外，一概是明晃晃，金灿灿的明沙。現在，被〝英雄母親〞披上綠色盛裝。
The Desert of Taminzhagan has an area of 280 square km. It means “the devil’s desert” in Mongolian and is also known as “400 kilometers of dry sea”. It is the largest desert in the northeastern China. Originally there was little vegetation. The whole area was covered with golden sands except some yellow wickers in some inner areas. By 2009, the “heroic mother” Madam Yi had covered it with green clothing.
Year 2009 plantation area [photo taken in 2010]
The green mom’s love turns dry sea into green land
Every time after returning from planting trees, Madam Yi would visit her son’s tomb in Pudong, Shangshai. By 2009, she could tell her son that over 500,000 trees had been planted. She was grateful to her son that when it was very dry during the planting period, she prayed and her son would bring rain and alleviate the irrigation difficulties.
She told her son that more individuals donated and more volunteers were helping to plant trees. She had been longing for enterprises to help provide regular operational funding, but it had not yet materialized.
第九章： 2010年 – 植樹 50萬棵 – 10年的項目提前完成
Chapter 9: Year 2010 – Planting 500,000 trees – 10-year project completed ahead of time
2010年四月的春季植樹，綠色生命一下子完成了五十萬棵樹的種植目標。在中國 婦女發展基金會的支持下，在社會眾多志願者的支持下，在各大媒體的宣傳報道下，易解放的「百萬母親，百萬棵樹」的植樹夢想得到了全國人的支持，她獲得了民 生銀行“十大非凡梦想家”一等奖，福特汽車環保獎和中華寶鋼環境獎共計三大項圓夢基金約 70 萬元人民幣的獎金，作為資金，提前四年完成預定的 110 萬棵樹的生態林援建種植目標。
In April 2010, during the spring tree planting period, NPO-Greenlife completed the 2010 target of planting 500,000 trees. With the support of the China Women's Development Foundation and many volunteers, and with the extensive coverage by mass media, Madam Yi’s dream of “Million Moms, Million Trees” succeeded. She was awarded the first class award of the “10 Extraordinary Dreamers” by Minsheng Bank, the “Ford Environmental Award and “the China Baosteel Environment Award”. The three awards providing RMB700,000 as funding which enabled the completion of the original target of 1.1 million trees, and it was completed 4 years ahead of the target date.
Year 2010 plantation area [photo taken in 2010]
Trees planted in 2010 (500,000 trees planted, survival rate is over 85%)
[photo taken in summer 2012]
第十章： 2004-2010 – 昔日沙漠 今日綠洲
Chapter 10: Year 2004 - Year 2010 – Desert yesterday, oasis today
七年過去了，綠色生命始於易解放女士一人在沙漠孤軍奮戰，到如今擁有了成千上萬的支持者、捐款者和植樹志願者。他們來自世界各地、各個國家、各個陛層、各 行各業。有中國、美國、加拿大、日本、新加坡、馬來西亞、韓國、荷蘭等國的公務員、企業家、藝術家、教師、大中小學生、白領和藍領工作者、家庭主婦、退休 老人等。
Seven years had passed, NPO-Greenlife started with Madam Yi laboring alone in the desert. Now there are thousands of supporters, donors and tree-planting volunteers. They come from many countries and from all walks of life. There are Chinese, Americans and Canadians, Europeans, Japanese, Koreans, Malaysians, Singaporeans, etc. They are students, teachers, office and factory workers, artists, scientists, civil servants, entrepreneurs, housewives, retirees, etc.
A mom’s love and persistence have aroused thousands of people’s environmental concern!
志願者參加植樹的照片。Photos of volunteers taking part in tree planting.
在廣大志願者，部份政府機構以及各大媒體的積極支持和參與下，綠色生命終於在2010年4月26日，提前4年完成了1萬畝生態林100 萬棵樹的種植目標，樹木成活率普遍達到85 %以上。所有親臨綠色生命植樹基地參觀的人都認為這是一個奇蹟。為此，中國國家林業總局、全國綠化委員會、全國婦聯三大部委機構，決定2011年的中國的 國際森林年會，在綠色生命基地召開。為綠色生命生態基地建立了“母親公益林示範基地”紀念碑，以示鼓勵和嘉獎。
On April 26, 2010, with the support and participation of volunteers, government departments and mass media, NPO-Greenlife completed the target of afforestation of a million trees in 10,000 mu (6.67 million square meters) of desert and the tree survival rate was generally above 85%. It was 4 years ahead of the target schedule. All who had visited the NPO-Greenlife’s afforestation base regarded it as a miracle. This was the reason why the Chinese State Forestry Administration, the National Afforestation Committee and the All-China Women's Federation decided to hold the 2011 International Forests Symposium in the the NPO-Greenlife’s afforestation base, and established a monument of “Model Afforestation Base of Mothers’ Public Welfare Forest” there as appreciation.
The trees planted in 2004 have grown up.
The photo shows where Madam Yi planted the first tree in 2004.
The traces of desert have gone.
By 2012, with additional effort, Madam Yi and her supporters had planted 1.5 million trees in Inner Mongolia and turned 10,300 mu (8.67 million square meters) of desert into green land.
Thanks to the forests, rainfall is now sufficient in the afforestation site. The peasants have good harvest of the agricultural crops they grow and they can gather fallen branches for keeping warm in the winter. The grass is sufficient for the cows, sheep and horses to eat, and they need not spend money to buy fodder. The land is not a desert anymore and sandstorms become infrequent. With a better economy, the children can go to school and life has become more settled.
拯救環境危機，荒漠化的治理，不應只是一位母親或者一個環保組織的責任，需要所有人共同關注。植樹不僅對荒漠化治理，實現節能減排、遏制氣候變暖等現像有 重大意義，它也是我國公民的法定義務。現在，NPO綠色生命與中國婦女發展基金會共同推出〝母親綠色工程〞，號召天下母親帶動整個家庭為了子孫後代植樹造 林。這是一項功在當代，利在千秋，億萬人植樹，福蔭子孫的環保大業。
Environmental protection and fighting desertification should not be done only by one mom or one environment protection organization. It needs all human beings to show their concern and invest their effort. Planting trees not only helps reduce the size of deserts, it also reduces the use of energy, the emission of greenhouse gases and global warming. NPO-Greenlife is working with China Women's Development Foundation to launch the “Mothers’ Green Engineering” project. It calls for all mothers to mobilize their families to plant trees for present and future generations of children. With millions of people planting trees, this is an environment protection project with good results for the current generation and in the future generations,
Madam Yi continues her effort of planting tree and is now working on another two afforestation projects at Dengkou and Duolun in Inner Mongolia.
Photo: Start planting Haloxylon trees in an area of 10,000 mu (6.67 million square meters) in Ulan Buh Desert, Bayan Nur city, Dengkou in Inner Mongolia in 2011.
Photo: Planting of trees (Pinus sylvestris) started in Duolun county in Inner Mongolia in April 2013.
The first batch of 23 volunteers included FCSI members from Hong Kong, Canada, Singapore, the United Kingdom and France; representatives from “Homeland Green” in Hong Kong, and volunteers from Chengdu and Beijing. They were working in freezing winds to plan the saplings to start the creation of anti-sandstorm forests.
Chapter 12: “HomelandGreen” supports Madam Yi’s tree planting and ecology revival projects
“綠蔭家園”是由一群在香港支持防治荒漠化的志願者成立。在2012年7月，“綠蔭家園”的成員访问了易女士在塔敏查干沙漠的第1期種 植基地及在烏蘭布和沙漠的第2期種植基地，以了解更多有關項目。在2012年10月，成員们參加了在磴口的第2期種植基地的植樹活動。在2013年4月和 7月，成員们參加了在多倫的第3期種植基地的植樹活動。在未來幾年，“綠蔭家園”將支持多倫的植樹活動。
“HomelandGreen” was set up by a group of volunteers based in Hong Kong who support works against desertification. In July 2012, members of HomelandGreen visited the sites of Madam Yi's Phase 1 plantation base in the Desert of Taminzhagan and Phase 2 plantation base in Ulan Buh Desert to learn more about the projects. In October 2012, members joined tree planting at Madam Yi's Phase 2 plantation base at Dengkou. In April and July 2013, members joined tree planting at Madam Yi's Phase 3 plantation base at Duolun. In the coming years, HomelandGreen will support tree planting at Duolun.
We wish that you will show your support!
(written in 2013)