Hundreds of Volunteers Step up as Community Stewards on 2019 MLK Day of Service

Family ready to tackle aggressive blackerry!
Volunteers were ready to clear aggressive blackberry from growing along street trees in Seattle’s Lichton Springs neighborhood.

In 1983, the third Monday in January became a federal holiday in honor and memory of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Eleven years later, Congress designated the Martin Luther King Jr. federal holiday as the United States’ first and only National Day of Service. Integral to the Civil Rights Movement, Dr. King spent his life working against injustices and his legacy inspired the environmental justice movement. Forterra’s community stewardship programs with the Green City Partnerships, Seattle’s Tree Ambassador program, the Port of Seattle, and the Port of Tacoma give people a hands-on way to pitch in and make a powerful connection to both the land and their neighbors, and play a part in that quest for justice — environmental and beyond.

Volunteers in Everett’s Hannabrook Park working to remove invasive Himalayan blackberry and Scotch broom from a landscape that will be planted with native trees.

On MLK Day 2019, Forterra and our Green City Partners hosted 18 events around the region, from the tideflats of Tacoma to Everett’s ephemeral streams, and from the shining hills of Snoqualmie down to the Salish Sea. More than 800 volunteers removed invasive weeds, planted native plants, strengthened their community ties, and reflected on Dr. King’s legacy.

A Tree Ambassador volunteer helps move weedy blackberry canes that were choking out street trees in a neglected right-of-way in north Seattle.
Volunteers with the Green Snoqualmie Partnership pose next to a massive blackberry root they subsequently dug out in a forested landscape in the Snoqualmie Ridge neighborhood.











We are so appreciative of all of the hard-working volunteers who spent their day serving their communities on MLK day with us this year. If you were not able to make it out to volunteer on Monday, we have multiple upcoming opportunities for you to help steward your community’s natural areas. Click here to find an event near you.

Port of Tacoma Volunteers under a rainbow
A rainbow appeared as MLK Day of Service volunteers planted native flowering plants at the Port of Tacoma’s Place of Circling Waters.











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