Royal Rangers delegation from Germany gets ready to work in Carmel Forest.
(photo credit: YOAV DEVIR KKL-JNF)
“When we heard about the fires that broke out in the Carmel in the past, we understood that this was an opportunity for us to enlist to help Israel,” said Andreas Huhn, the Hamburg Outpost Leader. “As rangers we love nature and the forest. As Christian Germans it is important for us to show our solidarity with the Jewish nation.”
The Royal Rangers is a global educational Christian movement, which is concerned with nurturing a love of nature, developing leadership skills, and learning through experience. The German delegation includes approximately 20 children, teenagers, and adults, rangers and movement leaders. They arrived in Israel for two weeks of trips, tours, encounters, volunteer work, and getting to know the country. This is their second year volunteering in the Carmel as part of this program.
The members of the group dispersed throughout Hof HaCarmel Forest
, where they engaged in pruning and thinning, created barrier lines to prevent the spread of fires, and pruned lower tree branches to prevent the treetops from catching fire in the event of a blaze.
“The joint work is a wonderful way to strengthen the bond with the other members of the group,” said Simone Huhn, a team leader in the Hamburg Royal Rangers. “I love Israel a lot and there’s a deep sense of satisfaction in knowing that we’re doing something significant here.”
The Hof HaCarmel Forest is spread out over 10 square kilometers on the western slopes of Mount Carmel
and overlooks the stunning vista of the Carmel’s coastal plain and the sea. The natural tree groves are integrated with the planted forest, and there is an abundance of rest areas, lookout points, and paths for hiking and bicycling.
Roy Revach, a KKL-JNF forester and firefighter, accompanied the volunteers in their work. “These are young and dedicated people, who live the forest,” he said. “It is very important for us to recruit volunteers for activity in the forest, because in addition to the professional help and the extra working hands, it’s also a wonderful way to connect people to the land and increase their awareness to the importance of forests and preserving them.”
Aaron Huhn, Simone and Andreas’s 10 year old son and a member of the Royal Rangers, joined in the forestry work. “It feels good to work in the forest, because I like helping,” Aaron said, while vigorously sawing off a pine branch.
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Read more, see photos of the Royal Rangers in Hof HaCarmel Forest.