The International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB), 2019 was celebrated on 22nd May under the theme, “Our Biodiversity, Our Food, Our Health” at the Centre Church SBAK, Nito Mount, Zunheboto. The programme was organised by Sumi Baptist Akukuhou Kuqhakulu (SBAK), Nito Mount in collaboration with the Nagaland State Biodiversity Board (NSBB).  Shri Shanavas C, Deputy Commissioner of Zunheboto, graced the occasion as Special Guest and called upon the gathering to work for survival and for the betterment of the next generation; he further added that to conserve nature, we should abstain from hunting and fishing. He also stated that we would be termed selfish if we only think only about the present without thinking about the future generation.

The programme was chaired by Smti. Katoli, Secretary Dept. of Women Ministry, SBAK, while Rev. Hukugha, SBAK, Executive Secretary, Nito Mount, delivered the welcome note.

Smt. Savinuo Kikhi, Forest Range Officer, NSBB, in her keynote address, spoke on the meaning of biodiversity, causes for the loss of biodiversity which included deforestation, development activities without proper planning, over exploitation of resources, jhumming, use of chemical fertilisers and pesticides etc. She also highlighted on the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), Biological Diversity Act 2002 and said that the International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB) is celebrated across the globe to create awareness and educate people on its importance. Further deliberation was made on the Theme “ Our Biodiversity, Our Food, Our Health” stressing on the importance of preserving the traditional food system and knowledge for better health. She urged the gathering on the need to work together as a team and help one another.

Shri Nuklu Phom, India Biodiversity Awardee 2018, made a presentation on how one should manage the rich biodiversity even without the help of the government and showed various activities done by his village led by the village chiefs and students in managing biodiversity. He lamented that Naga people to stand on their own feet and work and not only wait for the government to do something for them. He urged the gathering to start with what they have and to stop looking only at where they are but focus more on where they can be.

The programme included the launching of an audio play on “Biodiversity Conservation and its importance” produced by Nagaland State Biodiversity Board (NSBB) and to be aired by All India Radio (AIR), Kohima.

Approximately, 356 Participants from 147 churches under SBAK including Pastors, GBs, Village Chiefs and Council Chairmen attended the programme, and adopted a resolution which was read by Rev. Hukugha Zhimo, ES, SBAK, Nito Mount. (Resolution enclosed)

Shri Ivan Zhimomi, Team Leader, Tizu Valley Biodiversity Conservation & Livelihood Network (TVBCLN) concluded the programme challenging the august gathering to contribute towards Biodiversity Conservation for our food and good health.

The programme ended successfully with a grand traditional Sumi feast prepared with indigenous foods to showcase the rich and diverse food system.

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