Time To Check-In With Our South Sacramento NeighborWoods Project!
By Meredith Thompson, NeighborWoods Specialist
January 20, 2017
We have come to the end of
the first year of this innovative, community-led project. And what a great year
it has been! We’ve created a strong partnership with Soil Born Farms and the
Sacramento Regional Conservation Corps. We’ve met many engaged, active
community residents in Fruitridge Manor, Avondale/Glen Elder, Hampton Park, The
Avenues, Meadowview and Valley Hi. We’ve worked with schools, school districts,
elected officials – and most importantly – passionate community residents! We’ve
attended community events, neighborhood association meetings, and planted trees
at schools, parks and homes. We’ve seen incredible enthusiasm for the urban
forest and a strong desire to bring positive change to their neighborhood in
all of these communities. We are excited at the progress of this project in the
first year, but also looking forward to bringing the NeighborWoods message to even more residents and communities in the
Nowhere is our progress more
apparent than in our experience with Samuel Kennedy Elementary School. Early
last year, we were contacted by one of their staff members who had heard
about our work. Jim Crowley was looking to replace a few stolen trees – as well
as increase the tree canopy to provide more shade for their students. We soon
met with their principal, Eileen Peña, who expressed a great interest in trees
and growing the urban forest on her campus. One of the first things she said was “I Love Trees!” We knew that we had
found a strong community advocate for the urban forest!
Community Forester Kuldeep
visited their campus soon after – and together with the Elk Grove Unified
School District – sited 38 new trees throughout campus! Trees were sited with
students in mind, focusing on areas where they could provide shade during recess and physical education classes, as well as providing a green landscape that
they can see from their classroom windows, which increases concentration and
reduces stress. Our event was beginning to take shape!
Over the next few weeks, the Sacramento
Tree Foundation worked closely with the garden committee, Eileen and Jim to
plan a community event that would allow their students, parents and staff to
participate in planting trees. We brought in Soil Born Farms to work with their
garden committee to make garden improvements.
On Saturday, November 5th
– 100 volunteers arrived to a sunny morning on Samuel Kennedy’s campus ready to
work! Volunteers planted 38 trees, improved the garden, and mulched close to 50
trees! Many of those volunteers came from the Samuel Kennedy community – which
you could plainly see in their hard work in greening the school. This event
also allowed us to reach out to many community residents who wanted to green
their own street. Presently, the Sacramento Tree Foundation is working with
those residents to help them forest their neighborhoods.
This project brought many
community members together to improve their school – and the services it
provides to their students. And it all began with a simple phone call. Do you
have a school, church, business or home that needs trees? Give us a call – it’s
really that easy.
Contact Meredith Thompson at
916-974-4322 or firstname.lastname@example.org to learn how you could bring a forest to