Cyndy Bittinger: Wangari Maathai
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On returning to Africa, she wanted to use her education to find a solution to deforestation, devegetation and the unsustainable agriculture she found. Maathai came up with a plan and fostered community groups to plant trees, eventually 30 million of them. The United Nations' Voluntary Fund for Women supported her work, mainly done by local women. Civic and environmental education seminars became part of her Green Belt Movement.
Maathai was recognized with the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize.