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  M.   August 02, 2011

Young people who live in the Sky Rainforest Rescue project area recently met actress Gemma Arterton when she visited their school near Feijo. Gemma found that many have a real passion for the forest and want to see it protected. One of these is Josenieire Souza dos Santos, 16.

Josenieire calls the earth her home and the forest her house but is concerned that they are not protected. She’s aware of climate change and believes that the weather is getting hotter in this part of Brazil. She also says that there’s more air pollution than in the past and deforestation is contributing to this.

She said: “I love the forest and think it’s so important for us to protect it and the rivers that run through it. We need to deal with the threats the forest is facing, as trees are cut down by people to farm cattle and grow even more crops, not to mention the possible effects of climate change.”

At school, Josenieire is most interested in biology and environmental studies as she feels they relate directly to her life. After finishing school she wants to study environmental issues with a focus on freshwater and the rivers around Feijo.

And Josenieire is very happy that WWF and Sky are working in this part of the world.

She said: “It’s really good that the project is working here where I live because it not only helps people from this area but also provides information to the public in the UK so that they know more about forest conservation and what needs to be done in the Amazon.”

Gemma Arterton added: “The girls were really eloquent and had a real sense of what they want to do to keep the forest standing. Several of them said how the forest was ‘life’ and I thought that was really profound.”