Saskatchewan

Regina's Sikh community plants 550 trees, giving back to 'lungs of the planet'

Sikhs across the world are hoping to plant one million trees to honour their founder and help the planet, with local community members doing their part with the planting of 550 trees in Regina.

Sikhs around the world are aiming to plant 1 million trees to honour founder's birth

Sikh community members say a prayer before commencing with the planting of 550 trees in Regina. (Submitted by Hem Juttla)

Sikhs around the world are hoping to plant one million trees to honour their founder and help the planet — with local community members doing their part by planting 550 trees in Regina.

"We want to make a big footprint on the planet saying that our values are values where the humankind basically benefits," said Hem Juttla, with Guru Nanak Free Kitchen.

The Guru Nanak Free Kitchen gives back to the community by serving free meals in Regina's North Central neighbourhood, and with other service projects.

On Saturday, they gathered at the corner of Wascana Gate and Prince of Wales Drive for the tree planting project.

"Trees are lungs of the planet," Juttla said. "Our belief is what can we do for Regina, what can we do for Saskatchewan, what can we do for Canada, what can we do for the good of humanity."

Regina's Guru Nanak Free Kitchen is celebrating the birth of the founder of Sikhism by planting trees. Guru Nanak Dev Ji was born 550 years ago, which is why they've decided to plant that many trees. Host Shauna Powers checks in with Hem Jutla and Sandeep Singh Sandhu about what this project means to them. 12:08

Sikhs in communities around the world are planting 550 trees to mark the 550 years since the birth of the founder of Sikhism, Guru Nanak. The aim is to have one million trees planted worldwide by his birth month in November.

Juttla said it's the community's contribution to combating climate change and deforestation.

"What we decided was that 50 per cent of our trees are going to be fruit trees, where if we don't benefit, at least the birds and the animals can feed on that.

"So it's a gesture not only to human beings as a gesture to all living things."

The group will be at the Legislative Building on Saturday handing out 550 fruit and berry bushes to anyone who wants to help plant them, as part of its Sikh Day Parade events.

with files from Saskatchewan Weekend