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Union Gas Challenge Sponsors Park Naturalization Project

Project type: 
Million Tree Challenge

Group shot at Jesse Davidson Park Naturalization
MTC Partner Union Gas, led by Dave Craven, Director, Distribution Fieldwork Services, knows the power of a challenge. Earlier this year, Craven decided to send out a call to action to colleagues with the challenge: come together with funding and volunteers to do a park naturalization project to count toward London's Million Tree Challenge.

It was not long before Craven had garnered the support of four colleagues who rose to the Union Gas led challenge and put money towards its cost. Companies who jumped at the chance to help plant trees in London are:, T.W. Johnstone, Scotiabank, and Pin Point Publications. Union Gas donated $2,000 through their Vancouver Foundation. A total of $5,000 was raised to do this park naturalization project.Union Gas employees came out to volunteer too!

The park chosen for this group-funded project was Jesse Davidson – for its proximity to Union Gas as well as its need for continued naturalization along existing woods and some understory planting to increase the woods’ health and vitality.

June 8th arrived as a mostly overcast morning with a hint of rain that never materialized. About 80 volunteers – from the supporting businesses as well as from the community – came out to happily plant trees. For many, this was the first time they had ever planted a tree, for others it was something they had done many times.
Lots of young people took part in the planting.205 native trees and shrubs were planted in just over an hour and a half. Many hands make light work, especially with tree planting. Many of the young people enjoyed their first tree planting and vowed to return to visit their trees and the “baby woods.”
Big thanks to Dave Craven and Union Gas for organizing this challenge and being so supportive of London’s Million Tree Challenge. What a perfect Million Tree Challenge Partner activity! It is also a wonderful way to get staff involved as a team-building experience or community helping activity. It is so practical and produces tangible results that benefit all Londoners now and in years to come. Other MTC Partners should take note of this and perhaps launch their own challenge for the fall planting season or for next spring.

Jesse Davidson Park before Jesse Davidson Park after
Jesse Davidson Park before path Jesse Davidson Park after path
Dave Craven from Union Gas Showing all the weed wrench
Introduction to naturalization Union Gas employees
Thanks Union Gas! T W Johnstone group shot
Planting her very first tree A lucky tree gets a big hug!
Jesse Davidson Park planting Jesse Davidson Park planting
Jesse Davidson Park planting Community volunteers
ReForest London trailer and trees Jesse Davidson understorey planting