• unbeLEAFable

    Feb. 16, 2022

    Students set goal to sell/plant 250 trees
    order by March 23

    TreesThe Kids Helping Kids Club, Environmental Club and AP/IB environmental science students at Upper St. Clair High School have joined forces to plant 250 trees throughout the community. To reach their goal, the students have partnered with Tree-Plenish, a non-profit that provides communities with affordable tree saplings to improve sustainability. 

    Community members can support this initiative by purchasing a tree for only $5. Individuals have the choice of three different tree varieties, including a flowering dogwood, red maple or sugar maple. Saplings will arrive at Upper St. Clair High School on Saturday, April 23 – the day after Earth Day.

    To purchase a tree, visit http://tpevents.org/school/2370 and click “Order a Sapling.” The deadline to order is Wednesday, March 23, 2022.

    Trees will arrive on Saturday, April 23. During the online ordering process, individuals can choose to either pick up their sapling at Upper St. Clair High School or have it delivered and planted by student volunteers.

    Russ Hoburg, science teacher and KHK Club sponsor; Janine Despines, librarian and Environmental Club sponsor; and Lynn Kistler, science department curriculum leader, are excited about helping students lead a project that connects their interest in the environment with service to the community.

    “A really large number of our students are extremely passionate about making a difference for our planet and also in service projects that benefit their community. This project seemed like a perfect marriage of the two,” Mr. Hoburg said. “Our hope is that we will give families – especially those with young children – an easy avenue to get their kids excited about taking care of the environment and their community. The trees that they plant together as a family can serve as a constant reminder of this small step that they took to make the world a little bit of a greener place!”

    In addition to being able to order trees online, students and community members interested in volunteering to plant saplings on Saturday, April 23, can sign-up online at http://tpevents.org/school/2370 and select “Volunteer.” Families with young children are welcome to sign-up as a team.

    While the use of technology has reduced the school district’s paper usage, students are hoping to further mitigate the environmental impact by planting trees throughout the community.

    “The goal of 250 trees is reflective of the high school's paper usage over the past year,” Mr. Hoburg said. “In a nutshell, the goal is to offset the number of sheets of paper that our building uses by planting a similar number of trees in the community.”

    Mr. Hoburg explained that Tree-Plenish has existed as a student-led organization for the past couple of years and grows to serve more communities each year. 

    “We found out about the organization in the fall, and it fit well with the common goals of both Kids Helping Kids and Environmental Club,” Mr. Hoburg said. “The Environmental Club connection is pretty direct, and many students in KHK are passionate about sustainability and helping to ensure that the planet will be a beautiful and healthy place for the children of today to grow up and raise their own kids in the future.”

    For more information about the tree project, contact Mr. Hoburg at rhoburg@uscsd.k12.pa.us