Philadelphia’s NeighborWoods Month Celebration Gains National Attention

Sponsored by The Home Depot Foundation
Philadelphia, Pa. (October 16, 2007)- A pressing environmental health need for West and Southwest Philadelphia’s underserved neighborhoods is to restore the tree canopy, which ranges from 1% to 10%. Working with multiple local CDC’s, governmental departments, and community organizations, UC Green teaches neighbors how to become grassroots leaders who can drive revitalization in low-income communities by planting and caring for their trees.


This year, with massive volunteer assistance, UC Green will plant at least 200 trees, remove concrete at planting sites and thereby reduce stormwater runoff into the combined sewer systems and rivers, improve air quality, and to focus on greening the sidewalks leading to schools, parks, and playgrounds, in turn creating safer and healthier neighborhoods.
Philadelphia’s high crime rate has made all the headlines. Research has shown that a greener environment helps reduce crime, lessens stress, builds more community connections, and strengthens retail corridors, among other benefits. Working side by side with neighbors on shared efforts, UC Green’s efforts promote positive change and build social connections that will result in stronger, healthier communities, while ensuring the long-term care and survival of a vigorous urban forest.
On October 27, UC Green will leverage NeighborWoods Month to plant 61 trees across three neighborhoods in dire need of trees (Walnut Hill, Garden Court, and Cedar Park). Jared Liu, Director of Programs at the Alliance for Community Trees, will be at the event to talk about the benefits of trees and recognize the positive works that UC Green is partnering on- including their partnership with the city that won the recent Awards of Excellence in Community Trees from The Home Depot Foundation.
“Having local organizations like UC Green participate in National NeighborWoods Month helps us show the cumulative effect of a burgeoning urban and community forestry movement,” said ACT Executive Director Alice Ewen Walker. Founded in 1993, the Alliance for Community Trees is a national coalition of 140 nonprofit organizations engaged in urban and community forestry in 39 states and Canada. Its members are dedicated to grassroots community greening, public education, policymaking, job training, urban design, and other initiatives that support better awareness of the connections between trees and people.
NeighborWoods Month is sponsored through a generous grant from The Home Depot Foundation. “National NeighborWoods Month offers a unique opportunity for people to understand the contributions of trees to the health, beauty and livability of their communities,” said Kelly Caffarelli, Vice President of The Home Depot Foundation. “By partnering with ACT and local NeighborWoods organizations like UC Green, The Foundation is able to further its goals of investing in the overall health and success of our
communities.”
About The Home Depot Foundation
The Home Depot Foundation was created in 2002 to further the community building goals of The Home Depot by providing additional resources to assist nonprofit organizations building affordable, efficient, and healthy homes throughout the United States and Canada. The Home Depot Foundation is dedicated to creating healthy, livable communities through the integration of affordable housing built responsibly and the preservation and restoration of community trees. Since its formation, The Home Depot Foundation has granted more than $50 million to nonprofit and government organizations throughout North America. In 2006 alone, projects supported by the foundation built 9,000 units of housing and planted 300,000 trees. For more information, visit www.homedepotfoundation.org.
More information at: http://calendar.neighborwoodsmonth.org or www.ucgreen.org
For Immediate Release Contact:
Amanda Benner
UC Green
215-573-4684
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Download UC Green’s NeighborWoods Month press release.