Pune: Church of God World Mission Society hold cleanliness drive in Ramtekdi Industrial Estate 

Pune: Church of God World Mission Society hold cleanliness drive in Ramtekdi Industrial Estate 

Pune: Church of God World Mission Society hold cleanliness drive in Ramtekdi Industrial Estate 

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Church of God, ‘Environment Day’ commemorative carbon reduction activity held at Ramtekdi MIDC area.

Church of God World Mission Society (General Chairman Pastor Kim Joo-chul, hereinafter referred to as Church of God) organized the ‘Forest of Hope’ campaign and Make Pune Happy and Green campaign at Ramtekdi Industrial Area, Pune, Maharashtra. About 70 people, church members, their families, and neighbors, participated. The two campaigns are part of the ‘Global Hope Challenge’ that the Church of God is carrying out on a global scale to commemorate the 60th anniversary of its establishment. It is being carried out dynamically in Korea as well as in the United States, Argentina, Peru, Korea, Mongolia, South Africa, and other countries around the world to commemorate ‘Environment Day (June 5)’. 

On the 30th of June 2024, the ‘Forest of Hope’ campaign was held in the Ramtekadi MIDC area, Pune. The ‘Forest of Hope’ campaign of the Church of God is welcomed because it is a voluntary private practice of ‘tree planting’, a solution to preventing desertification. According to the ‘World Desertification Map’ published by the European Commission Joint Research Center in 2018, desertification is in progress on 75% of the Earth’s land area. It is also predicted that more than 90% will be devastated by 2050. Restoring forests by planting trees is considered the key to preventing desertification and a solution. In this situation, the Church of God is actively stepping forward to plant trees as well as forest purification, biodiversity conservation, forest fire prevention, and environmental awareness promotion.

On the morning of that day, about 70 people including the Church of God believers, their families, and neighbors gathered. At the opening ceremony, a Church of God official said, “The decrease in green space due to desertification increases carbon dioxide, accelerating global warming. The church is conducting the ‘Forest of Hope’ campaign to protect forests essential to responding to desertification,” and “We will continue to take steps of hope to the global village in accordance with God’s teaching to ‘be the light and salt of the world.’”

A joint declaration by generations led by representatives of middle-aged, young, and young students followed. The participants unanimously declared, “We will plant trees and protect forests to create a lush ‘Forest of Hope’ throughout the world,” and “We will realize a sustainable global environment and a happy future for humanity.”

After the inauguration ceremony, volunteers planted around 120 trees of various species on the premises of Ramtekdi MIDC. Also, the ASEZ STAR student volunteer group of the Church of God cleaned the area along the road from Fatima Nagar Junction to Ramtekdi from 9 am to 11 am.  Around 35 volunteers participated in it. For 2 hours, about 200 kg of various types of household waste were collected, including disposable plastic straws and cups, food wrappers, and waste paper. At this time In support of the church actively involved in afforestation, the wanwadi Ramtekdi Ward Office provided sanitation essentials such as saplings for planting trees and plastic bags for garbage collection.

Nisar Mujawar, Deputy sanitary Inspector of Ramtekdi Wanowrie Ward office and Rahul Kakade and Babu Adagale, the area in charge of the PMC department personally visited the site and greeted the volunteers, saying, “This work is a beautiful work to save the earth and the environment”. Saying this, They thanked everyone.

The volunteers also held a panel exhibition to raise awareness of the seriousness of desertification. Mr. Simplex (63), who served as a panelist, said, “Desertification causes water shortages, destruction of biodiversity, soil devastation, and serious food shortages and famine, which in turn creates victims of climate disasters.” He added, “Please join us in our global practice of protecting the ecosystem and environment from desertification and opening up a sustainable tomorrow for humanity.” Citizens supported and cheered for the Church of God’s carbon reduction activities. 

The Church of God has been consistently cleaning up cities, parks, streets, and beaches in each state, including Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, and Gujarat. The ‘Worldwide Passover Love Life Blood Donation Relay’, which is held annually to help neighbors in crisis due to blood shortages through voluntary, unpaid blood donation, was held 12 times this year alone. It warmly embraced the local community through activities such as visiting social welfare facilities such as daycare centers, nursing homes, and retirement homes to donate supplies and help with cleaning, volunteering to vaccinate polio victims, recovering from typhoon damage, and helping with farm work.

The activities of the church’s college student volunteer group ASEZ and the office worker youth volunteer group ASEZ WAO are also active. In Telangana, they carried out an environmental campaign along with mural painting using the Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design (CPTED) technique, and in Karnataka, ASEZ WAO cleaned up the area around Russel market in Shivajinagar and collected 2,500 kg of trash and 7,100 liters of plastic. The two organizations also delivered warm comfort to medical staff at hospitals in Pune, Ahmednagar, Palghar, and Nashik, as well as police and government officials, by delivering quarantine supplies, handwritten letters, and snacks during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The media commented on the Church of God’s active service, saying, “It presents a new direction for the balance of human health and the environment on a global scale,” and “It is a milestone for human society.” People from all walks of life, including the U.S. Senate, the Minister of Social Justice and Special Assistance of Maharashtra, the Health Minister of Chhattisgarh, and the Mayors of Mumbai, Pune, Ahmednagar, Ambikapur, and Vasaivirar, presented the Church of God with citations, awards of merit, and certificates of appreciation.

The Church of God, which began in Korea in 1964, is a global church that can be found in over 7,500 locations in 175 countries around the world. 3.7 million believers believe in ‘Father God’ and ‘Mother God’ based on the Bible, and have performed nearly 28,000 volunteer activities based on the teaching of ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ For their active and dedicated service, they have received awards from governments and organizations around the world, including the Presidential Award from the three major governments of the Republic of Korea, the U.S. Presidential Volunteer Service Award, and the Brazilian Legislative Service Medal, over 4,600 times.