Partnering with others
Protecting Our Ecosystem
Saving Plant Diversity Across the Globe
Photo: Joseph Zhou/Boeing
Plants are essential for all life on Earth, yet one-third of all plant species are threatened with extinction. Recognizing this situation, Boeing's Global Corporate Citizenship has partnered with Botanic Gardens Conservation International to help secure plant diversity for the benefit of the planet and its people across the globe.
"Boeing's support for BGCI recognizes challenges to our ecosystem and the need to protect and nurture native plant species," said Herbert Lust, Global Corporate Citizenship director of Strategy Integration. "Just as Boeing is committed to reducing the environmental footprint of our operations, products and services, our employees are demonstrating their dedication to improving the environment by making a tangible change in a local garden — and having fun while they're at it."
In June, Boeing and Jeppesen volunteers in Moscow, Beijing, Southern California and Denver took on local projects in support of BGCI and its global event, Plant Conservation Day. By focusing on the day's goals and assessing the needs of individual Botanic Gardens sites, Boeing team members in each of the five areas volunteered their own time and took on the challenge of creating volunteer and education events that addressed those needs."Boeing volunteers have so much to give," said Patrice Mingo, director of Strategic Programs for Global Corporate Citizenship. "This was a great opportunity for us to link Boeing sites with local botanic gardens and have volunteers and community partners work together around the world to achieve a common goal."
Plant Conservation Day, officially observed May 18 according to the United Nations, is an annual celebration of trees, flowers and all plants — their role in preserving our environment, their value to all human communities and the rapidly growing need for their conservation around the world.
Photo: Boeing Russia
Moscow"It was a pleasant surprise to me that Boeing cares about trees and plants and is active in charitable initiatives in our part of the world. Together, we have given a very good start to a Plant Conservation Day in Russia," said Dr. Vladislav Novikov, chairman of Moscow University Botanic Garden and a member of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
In Moscow, approximately 50 Boeing employees, family and friends teamed with 150 children from local schools to tour the garden, help with a rare plant donation and play an educational discovery game. These activities were designed to help the children learn about endangered plant species and medicinal plants in the Moscow region.
"It was great to see the interaction of Boeing employees with the schoolchildren. While our employees' conservation efforts were a model for the children, I think we gained much more from the presentations and energy put forth by the students," said Ben Moramarco, a short-term assignee to Boeing Russia Finance (originally from St. Louis Travel Accounting).
BeijingBoeing China employees were joined by journalists, students from Siwangfu Primary School, local community environmental protection volunteers and plant conservationists at Beijing Botanical Gardens.
"Boeing is dedicated to help make China greener," said Kenneth Yata, a Boeing volunteer representative in Beijing, in remarks to the students. "And you are the next generation to help make that happen."
The theme of the Beijing Plant Conservation Day activity was protecting cypripedium macranthum, a threatened indigenous plant. Students were encouraged to draw the plant, and later all the volunteers signed their names to a banner with the slogan "protecting plants is protecting humankind itself" as a token of their support for saving the endangered plant.
"I believe our environment must improve through efforts of responsible businesses like Boeing," said Zhang Peng, a reporter with a national online portal in China, who planted and watered one of the trees with Yata.
Photo: Gail Hanusa/Boeing
Employees in Southern California worked with the Huntington Botanical Gardens to plant trees at the Dubnoff Center, an educational and clinical agency for children, as part of Boeing's Plant Conservation Day. Boeing volunteers and foster care teenagers participating in the Dubnoff Center's Residential Program planted more than 40 orange, grapefruit and lemon trees near the classrooms and administrative offices. These trees will be maintained by the Center and grow to provide fruit and nutrition for the agency's community.
More than 1,500 local students participated in the Denver Botanic Gardens' special Discovery Day events during Celebrating Wildflowers Week in conjunction with Plant Conservation Day. As the sponsor for the week's events, Boeing subsidiary Jeppesen helped lead the educational activities. The planned activities featured self-guided exploration and observation of the native plant gardens. Students also learned about Colorado's native wildflowers and their importance to the ecosystem.
Boeing's partnership with BGCI reaches beyond the Plant Conservation Day activities. This partnership is working to develop new policy-based targets to guide plant conservation efforts in the next decade. The company's support will enable workshops in four regions to develop, guide and coordinate conservation activities while also taking account of specific regional requirements — with a special focus on China.