Community members make Ontario greener, one tree at a time during Trees Ontario's annual Community Planting Weekend

Local efforts by volunteers, residents and planting partners help re-green the province

TORONTO, May 6, 2013 /CNW/ - Trees Ontario, along with volunteers, community members and planting partners dug, stomped and deposited thousands of seedlings in seven separate communities across Ontario during a series of half-day tree planting events on May 4th.

Now in its fifth year, the annual Community Planting Weekend was hosted by Trees Ontario and supporting sponsors CAA South Central Ontario and TD Friends of the Environment Foundation.

In total, the sunny day drew together more than 700 volunteers and resulted in a total of almost 5,000 new trees planted (nearly doubling last year's efforts)! Planting sites included London, Windsor, Ottawa, Niagara, Midhurst, Kingston and York Region.

"CAA South Central Ontario is proud to have partnered with Trees Ontario for a fifth consecutive year," said Nick Parks, President and CEO, CAA SCO. "We are committed to doing our part to help preserve the planet through tree planting and other environmental initiatives."

Increasing large-scale planting across Ontario is part of Trees Ontario's mandate. The benefits of trees in rural and urban spaces are crucial not only to our ecosystem, but also to human health. Trees clean our air, improve local water supplies, establish wildlife habitat and provide a buffer against the effects of climate change.

"Trees enhance the vitality of our communities and what better way to showcase this than to directly involve families and youth through environmentally engaging activities such as this," said Rob Keen, RPF, Trees Ontario CEO. "It's been wonderful seeing land stewards of all ages join Trees Ontario, along with its partners, in taking such an active lead in ensuring a greener future for everyone."

Trees Ontario and its partners commend the contribution of all the families and community groups involved in this year's planting activities.

A special thank you also goes out to our planting partners: Cataraqui Region Conservation Authority, Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority, The City of Barrie, Niagara Parks, Regional Municipality of York, Upper Thames River Conservation Authority, CAA North & East Ontario, Rideau Valley Conservation Authority, Essex Regional Conservation Authority and Legacy Supply Chain Services.

About Trees Ontario
Trees Ontario, the largest not-for-profit tree planting partnership in North America, is leading efforts to strengthen Ontario's tree planting infrastructure by enhancing the capacity of its tree planting partners through financial support and professional development expertise, delivering landowner incentives through cost offsetting and educating the public through awareness campaigns and community workshops. Trees Ontario is the lead delivery agent for the government of Ontario's 50 Million Tree Program. The program significantly reduces landowners' costs of large-scale tree planting and boosts the number of trees planted across the province. Visit www.treesontario.ca.

Image with caption: "Seven Ontario communities are a little greener following Trees Ontario's fifth annual Community Planting Weekend, held this past Saturday. In total, the sunny day drew together more than 700 community members and resulted in a total of almost 5,000 new trees planted! (CNW Group/Trees Ontario)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130506_C3937_PHOTO_EN_26397.jpg

SOURCE: Trees Ontario

For further information:

For more information, photos or to arrange an interview please contact: 

Shelley McKay
Marketing and Communications Manager
Trees Ontario
144 Front Street West, Suite 700, Toronto, ON, M5J 2L7 
e: smckay@treesontario.ca
p: 416-646-1193 ext. 232

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