Belleville, IL — Oct. 3, 2019 — Furthering Southwestern Illinois College’s tree diversification efforts and sustainability goals, Homefield Energy donated 20 trees to the school to assist with replacing trees lost due to the spread of the emerald ash borer and Dutch elm disease. SWIC President Nick Mance, along with University staff and students, local officials, and representatives from Homefield Energy commemorated the donation with a ceremonial tree planting.
“Over the years, we’ve lost numerous trees, so we’re thankful for Homefield Energy’s generous donation and for helping us raise awareness about the importance of planting trees for future generations of students to enjoy,” said Nick Mance, SWIC president. “In fact, numerous studies show that students perform better academically when they have access to green spaces and tree canopies.”
The donated trees – including willow, magnolia, oak, red bud, pine, dogwood, and maple, among other species – further diversify the school’s tree population.
“As a company, we take pride in helping the communities and organizations we serve meet their sustainability goals,” said Caroline Atkins, Homefield Energy community affairs manager. “Trees have numerous ecological benefits, but they also strengthen, grow, and beautify our communities. We hope these trees will have a lasting impact and further enhance the quality of life for SWIC students, faculty, and alumni.”
Since 2002, Homefield Energy, and its sister companies, have provided nearly 300,000 trees to various partner communities. The donated trees have helped generate environmental savings and health benefits for municipalities and residents valued at approximately $37 million annually during the life of these trees.