By now I have met many of TreePeople’s wonderful supporters over e-mail or in-person. But in case I haven’t met you yet, I will take this opportunity to introduce myself. Before beginning this position I was eager to see what this organization and its 10,000 annual volunteers had in store for me. After a very mulchy first month full of forestry events, countless trees pruned, and one incredibly successful Harvest Moon Gala, I know that I planted my roots in the right place.… Read more >>
It is difficult to imagine what Hancock Park Elementary School, just two blocks from the busy intersection of Fairfax Avenue and Third Street, would look like without its luscious greenery. Tree canopies scattered throughout the grounds provide refuge from the sizzling blacktop and seem to uplift the vibrant little school from its urban environment. Tall surrounding buildings seem less oppressive as the arboreal shelter provides children with breaths of fresh air.
This is precisely the hopeful vision that TreePeople Citizen Forester Sheila Newmark strove for when she decided to plant 88 trees at the school site in November of 1998.… Read more >>
At the now-verdant Hansen Dam Recreation Center in Sylmar, Roger Klemm approached “his” trees for the first time in nearly two decades since planting them. The sight of their tremendous growth brought a look of wonder to his face. Thirty-nine mature trees now thrive at the site of this TreePeople planting; they both accent the landscape with shade and enhance its biodiversity.
When he first visited the area many years ago, Roger was surprised at how bare the surrounding land seemed to be.… Read more >>
As a nearly lifelong Treeperson, I have responses for all the usual questions about my Treepeople volunteering. To the question, “So, you hug trees, right?” I answer, “Of course! But not as part of my work.” To the question, “So, you guys are people made of trees?” I respond, “You know ‘connecting with your roots’ is just an expression, right?”
I’ve had plenty of time to perfect these responses; I’ve been involved with Treepeople since I was nine. The road to my position this summer as a storytelling and photography management intern in Treepeople’s Yurt Village (“What’s a yurt?” I’m asked, “Is it an animal?”) started with a few bags of popcorn and a class full of chipper third graders.… Read more >>
Better yet, handwrite us a letter. TreePeople received a package of just this type of letter from students at Sylvan Elementary School in Van Nuys. The youngsters missed the shade of three trees recently removed from their campus, and they took action.
Not just heart-warming, their handwritten letters were effective. They grabbed our attention, and with the combined leadership of TreePeople and a strategically-assembled Green Team of Sylvan’s students, parents, teachers and principal—they succeeded in getting exactly what they knew they needed and deserved, and more.… Read more >>
As a lifelong Angeleno, Mary remembers a time when she could ride her bike anywhere she wanted and nobody had to worry about where their children were. A time when nothing interesting happened except for an earthquake in 1933. “It was very peaceful, very ordinary,” she recalls of her upbringing.
Then, in the late 70s, some terrible weather brought the threat of mudslides to her neighborhood. The residents could see a hill begin to ominously slump over. “We knew there was a problem when we saw the mud in the gutter water,” she remembers.… Read more >>
In many ways, Xavier Cervantes is your typical 14-year-old. He’s a freshman in high school, he loves to go camping, and if he could spend a day in the life of any famous person, it would be funny-man George Lopez.
But if you ask him for his thoughts on our current environmental crisis, he sounds downright philosophical: “Great things don’t happen overnight, but where we begin to plant seeds, trees will grow.”
His proudest moment with TreePeople was his very first tree planting. … Read more >>
After the President’s speech on climate change this morning, and looking ahead to a hot weekend, we find our thoughts turning to snow. Specifically, Los Angeles’s precious local mountain snowpack. Why is this snowpack important (outside of skiing considerations), you might ask? In a lot of ways, it is a measure of the impact of climate change on our region.
Snowfall is one of the ways LA gets its water. Less snowfall equals less local water. Consequently, more energy has to be used to import water from neighboring regions and other states (where ecosystems are also predicted to become much drier).… Read more >>
Forty-five-acre Coldwater Canyon Park is home to TreePeople’s hilltop headquarters and the state-of-the-art Center for Community Forestry. Known to locals as a great hiking and dog-walking area, it’s one of the city’s valuable open spaces, and therefore home also to a myriad species of native plants and animals. As in other urban parks, though, its ecosystem is fragile and needs to be maintained.
TreePeople restores the park grounds with the help of a trained volunteer Ecological Restoration Team (ERT) that has evolved out of earlier teams of Americorps volunteers.… Read more >>
Did you grow up in Los Angeles? Can you remember what the streets and parks looked like when you were a small child? Is it hard to imagine what used to stand where a new mall or office building now looms?
For Josh, growth is measured by a pine tree in Van Nuys.
When Josh was in the first grade in the early 1980s, he went on a field trip to TreePeople with his class from the Open Magnet School. The memory was still vivid when he came to talk to us at our booth at an Earth Day event this year.… Read more >>