Over 31 years of marriage, Brian and I have planted hundreds and possibly thousands of trees at our various homes. The trees have been exotic, flowering and fruiting, each with its own special beauty. For us it is about strengthening our environment and creating something beautiful and practical, for us, our children, the local fauna, birds and our community.
On opening our funeral home eleven years ago, we were keen to be as environmentally friendly as possible. A fortuitous meeting with Colleen Filippa of 15trees in 2010, gave us the opportunity to take steps to offset the carbon associated with funerals.
Initially we decided for each cremation we conducted, a mature tree would be planted. Working with 15trees, the trees are sourced locally and offered to local entities such as schools, land care groups and community gardens. In September 2010 our first trees were planted at the Garibaldi Hall. In the following five years, close to 300 trees were distributed. Primary schools of Ballarat and district have been the most significant recipients.
2016 saw us expand our contribution to include burials. Up to this point, well over 300 trees have now been planted. Brian and I have attended a number of planting days at various schools, Miner’s Rest Primary School being one of them and the Learmonth Community Garden another. It’s been wonderful to see the parents and children involved. The pride and joy they feel in being part of the rejuvenation of their school yards and gardens with fruit and shade trees, is heart-warming. A number of schools have kitchen gardens and over the years fruit from their own orchard will be on the menu. So not only is the environment benefitting, so too are the children.
The response from families regarding our tree planting program is extremely positive and we look forward to a long and green association with Colleen Filippa and 15 trees.
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