Michigan Arbor Day Alliance along with ITC and DTE Energy Foundation celebrated with Daniel Axford and Oxford Elementary-Extended Day Program, the grand prize winner of the Go Green Youth Challenge (GGYC) on June 6th. The GGYC engages Michigan youth in environmental stewardship, community development and service-learning through a statewide effort to plant trees in Michigan. Children, pre-K through 12th grade, were challenged to collect coins, as an individual, classroom or club, from Jan. 15 – April 1, 2011. The coins collected directly fund community tree plantings. As the team that raised the most for the GGYC, Daniel Axford and Oxford Elementary-Extended Day Program were awarded 15 trees to plant in their community! They also attended the State Arbor Day Celebration on April 29 at Potter Park Zoo in Lansing.
“The day couldn’t have been more perfect. The students were very excited to know they helped raise money to plant trees in Michigan and their own community. Even as elementary students they know trees help provide oxygen, shade and homes for birds. This is what our program is all about, educating youth about the importance of trees so they can pass the message on to their peers and family,” said Rachael Wood, Michigan Arbor Day Alliance Program Coordinator.
A ground breaking ceremony was held at Daniel Axford Elementary. Students participated in an interactive discussion about why and where we should plant trees. They also had the opportunity to ask tree questions from a forester. After the ceremony, 15 trees were planted with the help of volunteers from the GGYC Grand Prize Team, Oxford Parks and Recreation, ITC, DTE Energy Foundation and Michigan Arbor Day Alliance. The tree planting sites included Daniel Axford Elementary, Oxford Elementary and Seymour Lake Park. Photos of the event and planting can be view at, http://www.miarborday.citymax.com/photoalbum.html.
The Go Green Youth Challenge raised a total of $20,850 for tree planting in Michigan. Michigan Arbor Day Alliance would like to thank everyone who participated including the sponsors, ITC, DTE Energy Foundation, Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Eaton Conservation District and Michigan State University Federal Credit Union.