Mrs Mekani has made invaluable contributions toward greening Singapore, encouraging community involvement and crafting programmes to empower our generation and the next
A lifelong nature lover, Mrs Kirtida Mekani has been an ever-present advocate for environmental causes in Singapore. For over two decades, her admiration for trees, a passion for contribution and devotion to sustainability has seen the development of nature-inspired programmes that continue to touch the lives of Singaporeans young and old.
Mrs Mekani served as the founding Executive Director of the Singapore Environment Council, facilitating environmental protection and educational projects in the business sector and community.
The committed environmentalist is also a trustee on the Board of the United World College of South East Asia (UWCSEA) Foundation. Through the Mekani Sustainability Fund, UWCSEA runs the successful Rainforest Restoration Project, a creation of dedicated tree nurseries that is run and managed by students.
Mrs Mekani’s proudest achievement is her conceptualisation of the Plant-A-Tree Programme, an initiative under National Parks Board's (NParks) registered charity, the Garden City Fund (which Mrs Mekani is a committee member of). The programme enables individuals and organisations to be involved in greening Singapore by planting tree saplings at our parks and nature reserves, encouraging greater connection and ownership with our environment. Since its inception in 2007, the programme has connected over 29,000 participants and seen some 200 species and 17,000 trees pledged and planted across Singapore – greening our city and returning tree-dwelling life to our shores.
Mrs Mekani also plays a strategic role as an NParks' Community in Bloom (CIB) ambassador. With her guidance, NParks' team of CIB facilitators has grown the number of CIB groups to over 850, reaching out to 20,000 gardeners island-wide, within a span of a few years.
Looking ahead, Mrs Mekani has set her sights on promoting the fascinating possibilities of biomimicry – the science of exploring solutions for tomorrow’s challenges, with the answers found in nature’s intelligent designs.
Mrs Mekani’s invaluable contributions toward greening Singapore, encouraging community involvement and crafting programmes to empower our generation and the next, make her a deserving recipient of the President’s Award for the Environment 2015.