As the first country on the planet to welcome in the year 2021 due to its time zone, New Zealand wants to inspire the world to start the new year with a little positivity. It has partnered with Trees That Count to invite people to plant a tree in the Forest of Hope - a new forest of native trees that will represent hope and regrowth for the new year ahead.

The idea was generated after the COVID-19 pandemic brought a lot of the world to a standstill this year. "The one thing that everyone can agree on is that 2020 has been a disappointing year and the world is craving some positivity in 2021," it says. "Missed out on a milestone birthday? Skipped out on a formal graduation ceremony? Postponed a long-awaited vacation? For every 2020 disappointment shared on NewZealand.com/hope, we invite consumers to plant a tree in the Forest of Hope."

The Forest of Hope will be located in both Queenstown and Northland. There is also the option to gift a tree to a loved one through New Zealand’s gift registry with Trees That Count, where people can donate a tree for NZ$10 (US$7) write a message, and then follow the tree on its journey when it is planted in New Zealand.

A tree in a forest in New Zealand
The Forest of Hope will be located in Queenstown and Northland © Tourism New Zealand

"Right now, we can’t share our beautiful country as we normally would, but we can still add to its beauty, and the health of the environment," says Tourism New Zealand. "Once we’re able to welcome visitors again, you can visit your tree that you helped grow."

Further information can be found on the website here.

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