Cardiff schoolchildren unite with Greenpeace to help save Rang-tan

A new Greenpeace film has been launched today featuring school children from three Cardiff schools as well as children from London and Manchester.

The film hopes to send a very different Christmas letter, calling on the companies promising to stop buying palm oil from forest destroyers by 2020 to remember their commitments.

The recital of “there’s a Rang-tan in my bedroom” adds the next generation’s voice to a widespread call for the end of rainforest destruction for palm oil.

Rang-tan has become a humble heroine in the battle against dirty palm oil for Greenpeace. Her story has become one of the most watched adverts of all time, with over 80m online views, leading to a massive upsurge in awareness of dirty palm oil production – encouraging Wilmar, which produces 40% of the world’s palm oil, to tighten checks on sustainable production from its suppliers. Work still remains to be done as companies around the world consume millions of tonnes of dirty palm oil each year, in products as diverse as shampoo and chocolate.

Rang-tan’s story prompted over 1,000 schools to contact Greenpeace for teaching aids on the issue, and thousands of children have been supporting Rang-tan with letters, stories and films of their own. This film brings together hundreds of children across the country in a unified and powerful voice, demanding companies deliver on their promises.

John Sauven, Executive Director of Greenpeace UK said:

“Rang-tan has moved people across the world and brought the destruction of forests for dirty palm oil to the attention of millions. The number of schools wanting to get involved in helping to protect the rainforest has been heart-warming, we wanted to help those children have a louder voice.”

Esma Izzidien, Cardiff Montessori School said the school had underestimated the children’s passion

“The lesson the children have had in being part of our video is one of the most important they’ve had this term. That you are never too young to take a stance and make a difference. That their opinions matter and that we will listen to them and enable them to act on them. I thought they would enjoy making the video and then move on. I was wrong. I underestimated them. They want to make a difference and we will ensure we do all we can to support them.”

Claire Janik, Pentrebane Primary, Cardiff added:

“Some of the world’s biggest companies are failing in their pledge to stop deforestation by 2020. We won’t let them forget! At Pentrebane Primary we are committed to working together to make a difference to our world. The past cannot be changed but the future is in our power and together we can make our future brighter.”

Bethany Bayley, Thornhill Primary School, Cardiff said:

“The Rang-tan animation has been such a powerful teaching tool, that has really resonated with the children. They’re proud to be involved in raising awareness of the devastation caused by palm oil production.” 

Lee Parkinson, Davyhulme Primary, Urmston said:

“Since watching the Rang-tan advert, my class have been inspired to do something to help the orangutans. They’ve realised that this is their planet and they are the future. Making learning real and relevant has had a huge impact on the quality of work children have produced. They’ve learnt that if they’re passionate and want the world to change, the internet gives them a platform to share and raise awareness and bring that change.”