Iskandar Puteri City Council (MBIP), in collaboration with Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) and United Nations Development Programme, published a story book titled “Puteri” to educate children about the importance of taking care of rivers as part of our nature.
Puteri is the main character of the story, a six-year-old girl. Targeted at children aged 12 and below, the book took one year to publish, involving nine committee members from MBIP and UTM.
The council’s town and country planning officer and project head Safwan Shaari said MBIP hopes to use the Puteri to drive home the message of the importance of loving our rivers.
“This book is part of MBIP’s Sungai Skudai Rehabilitation Plan in engaging with the public to increase awareness of pollution and environmental cleanliness, aimed from the young ones.
“We have published 2,500 copies of the book, which elicit fun learning with activities such as word games, stickers and infographics, other than the interesting story line itself.
“The books are meant to be distributed in schools under our jurisdiction and to the public during our engagement programmes, ” he said.
The river rehabilitation plan under MBIP started in 2017 with a series of programmes such as public awareness seminars, urban farming, compost projects and educational campaigns. All these efforts aimed at conducting studies and engaging with the public towards MBIP’s ultimate goal of low-carbon society by 2030. It was estimated that more than 8,000 members of the community have participated in various programmes in hope to change the public’s behaviour towards the environment, thus overcoming the pollution of Sungai Skudai.
Safwan added that the 46km-long Sungai Skudai, named one of the most polluted rivers in Johor, flowed through areas under three local councils namely the Kulai Municipal Council, MBIP and Johor Baru City Council.
Under its river rehabilitation plan, the council aims to incorporate landscaping and recreational elements along the river such as walkways, jogging paths, water activities, exhibition gallery and activity areas.
“With another 10 years to go in the plan, a lot still needs to be done, not only physical programmes such as river cleaning and infrastructure upgrades but also in terms of behavioural change among community members, ” he said.
The book was not for sale but the public could access the e-book via MBIP’s website at https://www.mbip.gov.my/ms/mpjbt/pusat-media/pengumuman/e-book-puteri