Wangari Maathai

Wangari Maathai

Biography

Author Profession: Kenyan Activist
Born: April 01, 1940
Age: 76 years old
Birth Sign: Aries

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Wangari Maathai quotes

It's the little things citizens do. That's what will make the difference. My little thing is planting trees.

Some say that AIDS came from the monkeys, and I doubt that because we have been living with monkeys from time immemorial, others say it was a curse from God, but I say it cannot be that.

And so I'm saying that, yes, colonialism was terrible, and I describe it as a legacy of wars, but we ought to be moving away from that by now.

Women are responsible for their children, they cannot sit back, waste time and see them starve.

In a few decades, the relationship between the environment, resources and conflict may seem almost as obvious as the connection we see today between human rights, democracy and peace.

That's the way I do things when I want to celebrate, I always plant a tree. And so I got an indigenous tree, called Nandi flame, it has this beautiful red flowers. When it is in flower it is like it is in flame.

Until you dig a hole, you plant a tree, you water it and make it survive, you haven't done a thing. You are just talking.

We need to promote development that does not destroy our environment.

African women in general need to know that it's OK for them to be the way they are - to see the way they are as a strength, and to be liberated from fear and from silence.

I think what the Nobel committee is doing is going beyond war and looking at what humanity can do to prevent war. Sustainable management of our natural resources will promote peace.

When you think of all the conflicts we have - whether those conflicts are local, whether they are regional or global - these conflicts are often over the management, the distribution of resources. If these resources are very valuable, if these resources are scarce, if these resources are degraded, there is going to be competition.

It's a matter of life and death for this country. The Kenyan forests are facing extinction and it is a man-made problem.

I don't really know why I care so much. I just have something inside me that tells me that there is a problem, and I have got to do something about it. I think that is what I would call the God in me.

All of us have a God in us, and that God is the spirit that unites all life, everything that is on this planet.

For me, one of the major reasons to move beyond just the planting of trees was that I have tendency to look at the causes of a problem. We often preoccupy ourselves with the symptoms, whereas if we went to the root cause of the problems, we would be able to overcome the problems once and for all.

I know there is pain when sawmills close and people lose jobs, but we have to make a choice. We need water and we need these forests.

It was easy to persecute me without people feeling ashamed. It was easy to vilify me and project me as a woman who was not following the tradition of a 'good African woman' and as a highly educated elitist who was trying to show innocent African women ways of doing things that were not acceptable to African men.

When I first started, it was really an innocent response to the needs of women in rural areas. When we started planting trees to meet their needs, there was nothing beyond that. I did not see all the issues that I have to come to deal with.

When resources are degraded, we start competing for them, whether it is at the local level in Kenya, where we had tribal clashes over land and water, or at the global level, where we are fighting over water, oil, and minerals. So one way to promote peace is to promote sustainable management and equitable distribution of resources.

I am working to make sure we don't only protect the environment, we also improve governance.

Be the change that you wish to see in the world. Mahatma Gandhi

One of the luckiest things that can happen to you in life is, I think, to have a happy childhood. Agatha Christie

I believe if you keep your faith, you keep your trust, you keep the right attitude, if you're grateful, you'll see God open up new doors. Joel Osteen quotes

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