Lincoln, Neb. – The Arbor Day Foundation recently announced the launch of its new Tree Campus Healthcare program.
This program aims to transform community health and wellness and ultimately save lives through the health benefits provided by trees, as well as recognize health institutions that make a mission-aligned impact to improve community wellness through tree planting, education and community engagement.
The Tree Campus Healthcare recognition program connects inpatient healthcare facilities of all sizes with local community forestry programs to improve human health outcomes while improving the extent and condition of community forests. Facilities in the U.S. delivering inpatient healthcare services are eligible for Tree Campus Healthcare recognition, including hospitals, senior care and other residential rehabilitation centers.
“Tree planting programs reduce carbon, increase resilience to climate change, and improve overall community health,” said Jessica Wolff, the U.S. director of climate and health at Health Care Without Harm and Practice Greenhealth. “We partnered with the Arbor Day Foundation on Tree Campus Healthcare as this program provides guidance for our hospitals and an opportunity to be recognized for their tree planting initiatives that support the communities they serve.”
This program is made possible through financial support from professional partner Davey Tree and the collaboration of the Professional Grounds Management Society, Practice Greenhealth and the USDA Forest Service.
“Healthy trees generate so many benefits for both healthcare campuses and the communities they serve,” said Sandra Reid, vice president of corporate communications and strategic planning administration at The Davey Tree Expert Co. “Davey Tree understands this and so do our clients. We support Tree Campus Healthcare because we want trees and natural landscapes to reach their maximum potential so we can all feel the impacts of those benefits.”
To receive Tree Campus Healthcare recognition, eligible facilities will conduct planning and activities that fulfill the five program standards throughout the calendar year. Those standards include: the formation of an advisory committee, development of a tree care plan, participation in a community forestry project, sponsorship of a celebration event or education campaign, and a suggested commitment to financial investment in tree projects, education events and/or community outreach.
“Tree Campus Healthcare will shine a light on healthcare facilities leading the way to advance human health and wellness through trees,” said Dan Lambe, president, Arbor Day Foundation. “The program seeks to help raise awareness about the importance of trees – not only for the environmental benefits they provide but also for the pivotal role they can play in the global future of health.”
For more information or to apply, visit the program's website. Applications for facilities wishing to receive Tree Campus Healthcare recognition will be accepted through December 31, 2019.