STAMFORD, Conn. (Aug. 6, 2015) — Keep America Beautiful and The UPS Foundation today announced the recipients of the 2015 Keep America Beautiful/UPS Community Tree and Recovery Tree Planting Grants. More than 30 grants, totaling $160,000, are being awarded to Keep America Beautiful community-based affiliates throughout the country.

The Keep America Beautiful/UPS grant program is intended to help:  sequester levels of carbon dioxide through strategic plantings; emphasize the importance of native tree planting; produce fruit from fruit trees for local consumption; and plant trees that will have a greater likelihood of withstanding natural disasters in communities that have lost a significant number of trees because of a recent natural disaster.

The UPS Foundation grants are part of UPS’s Global Forestry Initiative designed to plant, protect and preserve trees in urban and rural areas in the United States and around the world. UPS has surpassed the company’s 2014 tree planting goals, planting more than 1.7 million trees during that year’s grant cycle. Since 2012, The UPS Foundation and UPS employees have planted more than 3 million trees across 47 countries to support the environment.

“Keep America Beautiful is proud to be part of The UPS Foundation’s global effort to restore and stabilize the tree canopy in areas hit by natural disasters,” said Jennifer Jehn, president and CEO, Keep America Beautiful. “Our community-based affiliates are poised to take action in this effort as native trees are such a vital part of making our neighborhoods greener, healthier, safer and more beautiful places to live.”

In addition to the grant funding, the program also links Keep America Beautiful affiliates with local UPS employees who will provide volunteer support to plant the trees. Here are some highlights of UPS Community Tree and Recovery Tree Planting Grant initiatives that will take place in 2015:

Keep Springfield Beautiful  – This project aims to improve the environmental quality of Springfield, Massachusett’s historic Maple Might – Six Corners neighborhood by restoring the tree canopy lost in a 2011 tornado. Keep Springfield Beautiful will bring volunteers together to improve the visual and aesthetic quality of the streetscape in this targeted area.

Keep Tupelo Beautiful – The trees planted will help restore a 31-mile stretch of land destroyed by a Mississippi tornado in April 2014. Keep Tupelo Beautiful will also conduct classes on the importance of landscape design, planting native trees, and planning landscapes sustainably.

Keep Phoenix Beautiful – Keep Phoenix Beautiful Day will focus the efforts of its 2,000 volunteers on planting 40 new trees around the city along with restoring community gardens, city parks, hiking trails, and other local sites.

Keep Philadelphia Beautiful – After Philadelphia was hit by Hurricane Sandy, it developed a plan to recover the canopy in the city with a goal of 30 percent tree cover. This grant will be used by Keep Philadelphia Beautiful to plant 100 trees in an area of the city decimated by the hurricane.

“It is a privilege for UPS to partner with Keep America Beautiful, an organization which has been advocating for and protecting the environment for decades,” said Eduardo Martinez, president of The UPS Foundation. “Last year, The UPS Foundation gave nearly $4 million toward environmental sustainability efforts worldwide.  Our Global Forestry Initiative helps foster more resilient, sustainable communities globally.  Awarding these grants to Keep America Beautiful affiliates demonstrates UPS’s continued commitment to the environment.”      

The UPS Community Tree and Recovery Tree Planting Grant Program, now in its eighth year, is one element of The UPS Foundation’s overall support of Keep America Beautiful. The UPS Foundation also has supported Keep America Beautiful’s Vision for America Award, which is presented annually to distinguished leaders whose personal and corporate commitments have significantly enhanced civic, environmental and social stewardship throughout the U.S. UPS was the recipient of the Vision for America Award in 2007.

About Keep America Beautiful
At Keep America Beautiful, we want to ensure that beauty is our lasting signature. A leading national nonprofit, Keep America Beautiful inspires and educates people to take action every day to improve and beautify their community environment. We envision a country where every community is a clean, green, and beautiful place to live. Established in 1953, Keep America Beautiful provides the expertise, programs and resources to help people prevent litter, reduce waste, increase recycling, and protect the natural beauty of the areas around us. The organization is driven by the work and passion of more than 600 community-based Keep America Beautiful affiliates, millions of volunteers, and the support of corporate partners, municipalities, elected officials, and individuals. To learn how you can donate or take action, visit Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, like us on Facebook, or view us onYouTube.