Girl Scouts' tree planting project puts focus on clean air awareness
Eleven Girl Scouts from Troops 45766, 45939, and 45322 in the North suburbs of Libertyville and Vernon Hills got together to plant 20 Buckeye trees at Mundelein Park & Recreation District's Diamond Lake Sports Complex, located off Route 60.
The girls are working to achieve the Bronze Award, the third highest award in Girl Scouts. Planting trees is just one step of the project aimed at reducing the harmful effects of car idling.
"Car idling is when your car is on for more than 10 seconds and sitting in one spot, polluting the air," said Celia Aronoff a Junior Scout from Troop 45766. "We're planting trees here for two reasons, those trees will suck in the gasses that the cars put out. We're trying to reduce the amount of the gasses and trying to raise awareness for it."
Troop Leader Holly Aronoff helped coordinate the project with the park district. On Thursday, May 19, the Scouts -- Margie Blackmer, Julia Albin, Lorelei Wheeler, Paige Wheeler, Adriana Bayrakhtaryan, Sophia Bayrakhtaryan, Violet Aronoff, Celia Aronoff, Savannah Goodman, Danna Tellez and Nanki Dang -- planted the trees along the south end of the soccer field.
Other Bronze Award activities included collecting data recording how many cars idle at school pickup, hosting an activity table at the Vernon Hills Loop the Lakes, compiling research from the Environmental Protection Agency, and writing letters to Hawthorn District 73 Superintendent Peter Hannigan and Governor JB Pritzker.
"Kids' lungs are still developing, so gasses may damage them, causing asthma or any other disease to your lungs," said Danna Tellez, a Junior Scout from Troop 45766. "So it's good to plant more trees to suck in the CO2 and purify the environment."
Mundelein Park & Recreation District often works with volunteer groups on projects like this that enhance our parks. For information on volunteer opportunities, visit mundeleinparks.org.
"It was really nice to see young people take an interest in planting trees," Parks Maintenance Manager Nathan Neuwirth said. "Their project will not only beautify our park, but improve our air quality for years to come."
"We're giving back to the community and it feels really good to do that," said Paige Wheeler, a Junior Scout from Troop 45322.
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