Chainsaw Tree

This year, I was involved in a project called “Chainsaw Tree.” The version is to empower individuals to begin to care about, take action, and advocate for our nature. To succeed in this vision, we have launched a campaign called “Chainsaw Tree.” Before this project, I was a part of another project that was trying to raise the same awareness, reforestation. In that previous project, I was writing a book that scripted the meaning of reforestation through a fictional boy’s life. Due to some unfinished work and as a writer, I ended up at the same project, Chainsaw Tree 2.0. 

The Chainsaw Tree 2.0 exploration planned to host three competitions to move people from thought to action and to spread nature positivity. We wanted people to enjoy nature while participating in our competitions. Therefore, we came up with poetry, photography, and performance competition, where they require to write an original poem, shoot a stunning photo and take a video of a dance performance. Each one of these required the participants to insert the theme of “The beauty of nature” or “The Chainsaw Tree.” While completing these tasks, participants can spend time exploring nature. Moreover, these competitions allowed global citizens to share their thoughts and solutions toward the deforestation crisis in a positive way. While running this campaign, our team believed that we can at least urge humans to care about our forests. 

Before the competitions can be up running, the plans and competition guidelines should be laid out. To accomplish the set tasks, we have divided ourselves into different groups. I was selected to work on a performance competition. In the working process, I have learned two major skills: networking and writing guidelines. On the other hand, I have to keep up with the emails and the information all the time.  From my experience, hosting a competition was a pressure task since we have to be in control at all times. 

This campaign didn’t only contain a few competitions, we also wrote songs. Two of my female teammates were responsible for writing these songs. They once wrote an English song called “If I saved U, I’d saved us,” and a Khmer song called “It’s not too late.” We aimed to push people to start to understand and to care about the importance of nature. Besides, to showcase the richness of the green and what it has been offered to us as human beings. We hoped that these songs can inspire one to love nature and to help nature to recover from the brutal damages. We recognized that trying to spark the impact through adversity was an obstacle during this COVID-19 pandemic. However, we still stood on our grounds because we believed that our action is the lit fire. If we don’t start, then who?!

Despite competitions and songs, there was another task that we have been working on. It’s a book called “The Chainsaw Tree.” The storyline took us seven weeks to be finalized. At first, the plot seemed to be out of place, but as we spent more time discussing, we have come to solidify our storyline and drafted the first version of the book. Although we believed that the texts can be an inspiration for many people, our school director wanted to implement this short novel into an animated movie. Before that can happen, we needed to design a movie pitch for a movie director to evaluate and make a decision, whether it’s possible or not. After many complex processes, it was fruitful. The movie director agreed to find a movie team for our story. I hope that this movie can be brought to life. 

I’m sure that you are wondering “What is The Chainsaw Tree?” Well, the Chainsaw Tree is a sculpture that was constructed by many actual chainsaws. The chains and the saws were once collected from the illegal loggers in Mondulkiri province by the Ministry. Now, our school has requested the government to own those chainsaws to build this Chainsaw Tree. Check out these photos below!

Nature takes over the Chainsaw Tree

To expand the impact, we’ll distribute the short novel to the government schools once it is finally published. In addition to book distribution, we’ll package a set of stickers and painting supplies to go alongside the book. Why? Simply because we wanted 25 government schools in 25 provinces to have the Chainsaw Tree like us. They can use the provided sticker of the Chainsaw tree to stick to the school wall. On top of that, they can use painting supplies to paint the background. This was another portion of our campaign. 

The Chainsaw Tree sticker 

At last, being a part of this project has reinforced me to become a nature advocate and a real changer. After learning this project, I will try to share this education with others so that we can recreate a healthy world together. Working on this project for almost 14 weeks, I felt deeply connected with nature as well as my teammates unlike before. I couldn’t believe that it was one of the most active journeys for me during this unprecedented time. In addition, I have improved myself in so many areas such as working ethic, networking, problem-solving, and designing. I’ve really appreciated the opportunity.

Let’s create a better future together. “Save the Earth, it’s our only home.”

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