If you're like me, you kind of sigh with disbelief at the general conservative Christian opposition to environmental protection. Really? We don't want to honor and respect the world that God so fearfully and wonderfully made?
Which makes it really exciting to find a Christian organization devoted to the part of environmental protection that really motivates me: saving the earth for people.
Because--let's face it--I'm not exactly outdoorsy. I grew up camping and hiking occasionally (my parents have hiked the Grand Canyon like fifty times...without me), but most days, I'd just as soon lie in a bed as on an air mattress under the stars. And animals are nice and all, but so are coffee shops and book stores.
However: ignoring the fact that we depend on the earth's resources (clean water, growable food) to live is lunacy. And ignoring the fact that those who are marginalized depend on the earth much more than me is at best callous.
So the more I learned about Plant with a Purpose, (the charity formerly known as Floresta) the more excited I got. They work on reforesting impoverished areas, and restoring the environment for people who depend on it absolutely. They do work in the Dominican Republic and in Haiti, along with mexico and in Africa. And they do it all in Jesus' name.
I still remember reading about the environmental catastrophes of Haiti, where you can see the border between the DR and Haiti clearly because all the trees on one side are gone. Guess which side is more impoverished? Guess which side had a harder time recovering after the blasts of the 3 hurricanes last year?
I also remember reading one of PWP's updates. They pointed out that when people deforest their own land for firewood, they're not stupid. They know that long-term, cutting down all the trees will starve them eventually. They just will starve now if they can't cook anything. Or boil their water.
PWP also works on sustainable agriculture, microloans, and community development.
Incidentally, after the hurricanes last year, they received a lot more interest in their programs from locals, because the locals realized that those who had worked with PWP recovered from the devastation more quickly, and with less help from outsiders.
So if you're a tree-hugger like me and you'd like to support Christians making environmental work a priority, check out Plant with Purpose. And bonus! They're even located right here in San Diego!