The Cumberland Valley High School senior organized the project to replace trees at Camp Small Valley, near Halifax, Dauphin County. The camp had been her home away from home during summers growing up.
The planting of 100 trees was also the kick-off of the Girl Scouts in the Heart of Pennsylvania’s portion of a nationwide campaign to plant five million trees in the next five years.
It was also the day a new tree-focused fun patch was unveiled and available for all Girl Scouts in the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
The day also happened to be the third anniversary of the Keystone 10 Million Trees Partnership, coordinated by CBF. The partnership provided the trees and supplies for the planting.
“In 2018, a bunch of trees had to be cut down because they were in poor health and were a safety concern for campers,” Brought said. “One thing that makes this camp so beautiful is the nature that surrounds it, so the idea of having a tree planting came up.”
Braught’s event success Saturday was rooted from tree-planting experience gained as a CBF student leader.
The Girl Scouts’ USA Tree Promise is a nationwide, five-year initiative for Girl Scouts to plant five million trees.
“That roughly equates to two trees per Girl Scout,” said Lutricia Eberly, Director of Outdoor and Program Experiences for GSHPA. At another event on May 16 in Lancaster County, Girl Scouts will plant 50 more trees.
“That five million trees is going to have a significant impact on our environment,” added Janet R. Donovan, President and CEO of GSHPA. “Girls are soaring in the outdoors. The outdoors is in, thanks to COVID. Outdoor programs increase outdoor interest, competence, confidence, and they increase environmental stewardship as Lauren is showing us today.”
Also attending Braught’s planting was Moriah Hathaway, Executive Director for the Pennsylvania Commission for Women.
The GSHPA and the Keystone 10 Million Trees Partnership are collaborating on Tree Promise efforts in Pennsylvania, as well as on the new “Clean Water Grows on Trees” fun patch for the Girl Scouts.
“Girl Scouts can get the patch after taking part in any numbers of activities, including tree planting, or ‘Learn Outside, Learn at Home” series,’ said Partnership Manager Brenda Sieglitz. “They can also take advantage of the 2021 Tree Challenge at the NASA Globe Observer application available on smartphones to measure tree height and diameter in the neighborhood.”
Girl Scouts in the GSHPA and in other Chesapeake Bay watershed chapters can get the free fun patches at the CBF online store and pay shipping.
The Keystone 10 Million Trees Partnership is a collaboration of about 180 national, regional, state, and local agencies, conservation organizations, watershed groups, conservancies, outdoors enthusiasts, businesses, and individuals.
“We are incredibly proud of the supportive relationships we have with our partners and in three short years they have rallied around this ambitious goal and planted over 2.8 million trees,” Brenda Sieglitz said.
Next year, the partnership anticipates it will plant 500,000 trees and is currently looking for landowners who would like to add the value of trees to their properties.
For her years spent coordinating and then executing a successful tree planting on an historic day, Lauren Braught earned the Gold Award, awarded to fewer than six percent of Girl Scouts annually.
For more on Chesapeake Bay-related issues in Pennsylvania, visit the Chesapeake Bay Foundation-PA webpage. Click Here to sign up for Pennsylvania updates (bottom of left column). Click Here to support their work.
Also visit the Keystone 10 Million Trees Partnership to learn how you can help clean water grow on trees.
CBF has over 275,000 members in Bay Watershed.
How Clean Is Your Stream?
DEP’s Interactive Report Viewer allows you to zoom in on your own stream or watershed to find out how clean your stream is or if it has impaired water quality using the latest information in the draft 2020 Water Quality Report.
(Photo: CBF Student Leader Lauren Braught shows the fun patch available to Girl Scouts; Lauren Braught helps Charlotte Frye, 9, of Harrisburg, before placing a tree into its planting hole.)
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