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#ClimateStory4Kids: Jugwa village and the wise chief

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#ClimateStory4Kids: Jugwa village and the wise chief

Hello Kids. Welcome to #Climatestory4kids!

 

A long time ago at the base of the Mnarani mountains was a small village called Jugwa.

 

The village was blessed with natural resources – streams with fish and other aquatic species, vast forests that produced great yields, and a well that was a source of drinking water.

 

They had basically everything and the economy flourished as people came from far and near to trade, further enriching the village.

 

But there was one problem: the villagers were wasteful.

 

Because of the abundance of resources, they wasted everything. They would throw food away. They destroyed the forests to build houses and get wood for fuel. They continued to fish without giving hatchlings time to mature. They fetched water from the well without giving it time to replenish itself. They even wasted water.

 

As days went by, their resources began to deplete. The first significant change was the absence of fish in the stream. The fishermen would return empty-handed after toiling the whole day. They didn’t understand why the stream had no fish.

 

Soon after, their well dried up, forcing them to turn to the stream for water but because the water wasn’t safe for drinking, they began to fall ill.

 

They couldn’t go to the forests to get the regular herbs for treatment because they were all gone. They had destroyed the forest to the point that nothing was left. The once fertile land could not even produce enough crops for feeding.

Everything seemed to have stopped functioning in the village. It seemed they were cursed.

 

As expected, rumours began to circulate that a strange spirit had cursed the land. This rumour was fueled by Mr Wanjiru.

 

Mr Wanjiru was a cunning man in the village who always schemed on ways to swindle people. He started the rumours and lied that the village was cursed and that he knew a native doctor that could help them but they had to bring a fraction of their daily produce.

 

Unknown to the villagers, Mr Wanjiru saw it as a means to enrich himself.

 

The villagers would toil all day and still squeeze out something to appease Mr Wanjiru from the little they managed to gather.

 

This continued for a while and things weren’t looking up. The villagers continued to suffer and it looked like there was no end to their suffering in sight.

 

One day, news came in that their chief had returned. They called him the ‘wise chief’ because he seemed to have the solution to every problem.

 

The villagers were happy that he had returned from his journey to the neighbouring village.

 

However, Mr Wanjiru was not happy because he knew what this meant for his evil plans. So, he went to the wise chief and said, ‘Wise one, while you were gone, an evil spirit cast a spell on the land and we’ve been unable to flourish like we used to.’

 

The wise chief was taken aback. What spirit? He asked himself, not believing what he had just heard.

 

He decided to have some rest and inspect the village the next day.

 

Morning came the next day and the wise chief set out alone, without the knowledge of anyone, to inspect the village.

 

He saw that almost all the trees were gone and the soil had been degraded. He saw empty streams and an almost dried-up well.

 

It was then he understood what was happening. The people were not giving the earth enough time to heal from all the activities they carried out on it.

 

He went back to the village and summoned everyone.

 

‘My people, the earth, just like us, lives and breathes.’

 

‘What happens when you have a bruise and you keep peeling off the surface? It won’t heal, right? The same applies to the earth.’

 

‘We pull down trees and do not give the land time to regenerate. We over-fish. We fetch from the well, forgetting that it comes from a source. We waste food because we think we have it in abundance.’

 

‘Let me tell you, the things on earth aren’t unlimited like we assume. If we keep taking and taking without replenishing, we’d be doomed.’

 

‘It is high time we started paying attention to our environment and how we treat it for it is only when we heal the earth that it will heal us.’ The wise chief ended.

 

The villagers, including Mr Wanjiru, were astounded at his wisdom. He was the wise chief for a reason after all.

 

The villagers soon started cutting down waste and ensured that whatever activities they carried out, including farming and fishing, were done in a way that still made room for more to grow.

 

Jugwa village soon started flourishing and the people lived happily ever after.

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