What can you do when you really want to?
Yes, I said anything. Nothing is too big. But it helps to take it one step at a time.
Over three decades ago, 16-year old Jadav “Molai” Payeng came across a swarm of dead snakes washed onto a bare sandbar in a flood India’s Assam region. “The snakes died in the heat, without any tree cover. I sat down and wept over their lifeless forms,” Jadav.
Whereas most people would stop at the weeping (if they ever got even that far), Jadav didn’t stop there. Instead, he planted a tree. Then he planted another. And another. And he kept planting trees. The barren sandbar is now a thriving forest of 1360 acres – including such wildlife as rhinos,tigers, apes, elephants and deer. The Assistant Conservator of Forests, Gunin Saikia, believes this is the biggest forest in the middle of a river in the world.
Just one man planted every single tree. Each one from seed. Year after year.
He lives now in the forest that bears his name, selling cow and buffalo milk for a living. He moved in as a teenager so that he could oversee the project directly.