Trees and urban forests offer a variety of environmental, social, and health benefits which are well-documented in numerous studies. Unfortunately, many underserved communities in Los Angeles County are tree-poor and park-poor, and therefore not able to enjoy such benefits. To address this issue, The Tree Pledge and the Radical Resilience Lab have just launched Good Shade, an urban reforestation tree-planting program developed in partnership with the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR), with funding from California ReLeaf and CALFIRE.
Good Shade was designed to address shade equity disparities in underserved areas of Los Angeles County and to generate multiple co-benefits through tree planting and education. Good Shade will improve the physical, emotional, social, and economic health and well-being of local residents, reduce heat islands, reduce stormwater runoff and increase connection with nature. Through Good Shade, the partners seek to plant hundreds of trees throughout the region in tree-poor communities, offer a multidisciplinary range of educational opportunities, and engage residents in supporting the new trees.
Good Shade’s first project is the planting of 50 new trees by the Los Angeles Conservation Corps at Alondra Community Regional Park which is located in an area of high park need per the Los Angeles Countywide Parks Needs Assessment. The program is also starting an education campaign to raise awareness of the mental and physical health benefits associated with human connection with trees and nature.