The 2nd Patmos Ecology Festival concluded with a series of beautiful activities.
25 enthusiastic runners took part in the race from the square of Skala to the heart of Kouma and back, returning to the square they brought with them a cluster of seeds, a symbol of the battle that is and must be fought to stop the erosion of the soil of our mountains and hills, to stop and reverse the advance of the desert.
Seeding has continued and the planting of 150 saplings has been completed, as has the work of arranging the system for watering them on the fenced portion of the hill that still extends to 12 acres. The saplings all received their first good watering.
In the afternoon, a vegan cooking workshop was held in the garden of the Pernera vegan garden, where we all learned to make seed cheese from sunflower seeds and almonds and soutzukas from minced black beans. At the same time we talked about the need for immediate change in the way we eat if we want to stop reinforcing the main driver of desertification, as well as other current environmental and socio-political problems on our planet, which is livestock farming.
This was immediately followed by a collective lunch in the garden, where we tasted what we had prepared and much more, celebrating in a spirit of unity and solidarity the successful conclusion of the work and actions of the 2nd Patmos Ecology Festival.
Our festival this year was entitled Desertification and tried to raise awareness among the residents of Patmos as well as visitors about the global phenomenon, yet so visible on our island, of the desertification of the land and its final transformation into a barren desert, mainly due to overgrazing.
Last week, using the method of silver pellet production, myriads of plant seeds were sown on the hill of Kouma, which will contribute to soil cover, soil stabilization and soil enrichment. Hundreds of new and healthy trees of different local species such as oaks, carob trees, myrtles, oleander, pines, myrtles, cypresses, cypresses and olive trees were also planted. This time we have managed to ensure that they are adequately watered.
We learned to collect wild seasonal seeds, which we then used in the bole sowing.
We also collected dozens of kilos of plastic and other rubbish from the Skala-Sapsila coastline in a few hours by the festival’s team of volunteers.
For the trees we would like to thank the Rhodes Regional Nursery and its manager Nikos Renesis, the South Aegean Region and the prefect of Kalymnos Manolis Mouselis. Also the local nurseries of Alexis Moschos and Alexandros Alexandris Alexandris for the free provision of seedlings.
All the schools of Patmos participated in the sowing of saplings. We would like to thank the teachers who so warmly responded to our call and we wish that from now on the obvious will always happen, that the educational community and our educational system will take on the duty to make the children understand the seriousness of the issue of desertification and that they will take on the rescue of the whole of Kouma and the re-greening of the whole of Patmos, before it turns into a set of bare stones.
The participation of the islanders was generally small, but the work was completed efficiently thanks to the passion of the participants.
The municipality of Patmos officially took over the filling of the water tanks we secured on the hill, which we intend to multiply immediately in the coming period. The municipality cooperated perfectly to transfer water quickly when it was needed.
We hope to see in the near future, more active participation from the political world of the island, as if they do not understand the magnitude of the problem of desertification on the island and the need to save our soil through collective action, then the future looks bleak. We in the meantime, in case they do not yet understand, will do our best to help them understand. Kuma is only a model in miniature of what needs to be done on every hill and mountain on the island, the country, the planet.
For another year, we owe a big thank you to Nikos Tsobanoglou, a dedicated ecologist and farmer specializing in natural and organic farming, who in addition to his hard work and guidance, has again taken on the educational seminars in and with the schools.
We also have to praise the hard work and dedication of the team of Pernera i.e. them: Nicolas Nikolopoulos, Gozde Oguz and Eva-Anna Roboti who for a week were constantly present in all the activities, events and field work.
We also thank the members of the Patmos Hippocampus Environmental Protection Association for their useful help.
Finally, we would like to thank Eva Nikolopoulou for her communication support.
See you in a year for the 3rd Festival.
If you would like to join the reforestation and desertification team of Kouma, please email us at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org or call 6986361422 and 6974389713. We need people with a similar outlook and willingness to dedicate themselves to serving the common good! Together we can accomplish even more!.