The day begins to wane as you watch the vibrant sunset from the comfort of your trusty canoe, allowing the sun’s fleeting rays to warm your soul. As you paddle along you take note of the tiny turtle family sunbathing amidst a floating log on the nearby bank, and the rhythmic lull of the flowing river as the bow of the canoe bisects the current. You begin to comment on the perfection of the pristine panorama you are beholding, but what is that in the distance obstructing your view…a pile of tires? Unfortunately this has happened to me and many others across the world as we face an epidemic of illegally dumped tires in our lovely waterways, parks, roadsides, and just about anywhere imaginable. As un-anesthetically pleasing as this may be, abandoned tires cause far worse problems to our environment and health. With a little education and effort we can eradicate-or take steps to prevent- the tire pile-up by recycling, re-purposing, or reusing these tires in new and innovative ways.
Here at Team Green Adventures, we love being involved in the Nashville community as much as possible. From hiking local trails to canoeing nearby rivers, maintaining a close relationship with Middle Tennessee and the people and organizations that make it unique is vital to our identity as adventurers. Part of our duty, then, is to give a little back to the place we call home by lending a hand to help keep it a little greener, a little cleaner, and a little healthier.
We partner with great local organizations year-round to get out and volunteer, and we thought right now would be a great time to reflect on all we’ve done so far, and to thank all our volunteers for helping make change happen this year! Check it out:
This year, we partnered with Hands On Nashville, the Nashville Tree Foundation, and Belmont’s Massey School of Business to plant more than two dozen trees in local neighborhoods.
We teamed up with Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee to distribute more than 24,000 pounds of food to 112 families in need, sort nearly 11,000 pounds of food in their warehouse, and pack more than 2,500 backpacks for hungry schoolchildren.
Speaking of schoolchildren, we took part in Hands On Nashville Day again this year, helping to beautify Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School by planting greenery and cleaning up the landscaping around one of Nashville’s most innovative public schools.
We partnered with Bridgestone Americas’ Tires4ward program, paddling more than 25 miles of local rivers to remove 55 tires and 50 bags of trash from our scenic waterways.
We joined forces with the Cumberland River Compact and Hands On Nashville to clean up multiple sections of Mill Creek, including our very own mile-long adopted section adjacent to the Mill Creek Greenway. Over the course of 3 cleanups, we removed 62 bags of trash and tons of other large debris from the waterway.
We worked with both Hands On Nashville and the Nashville Food Project in their community gardens, helping to provide access to healthy food for Nashvillians in need.
We helped out at multiple Habitat for Humanity builds, working towards providing eco-friendly and affordable housing options for low-income families in Middle Tennessee.
We even lent a hand to Ferrell Hollow Farm Senior Horse Sanctuary, helping them prepare for their annual fall fundraiser so that they can continue to care for horses that have been neglected, abused, or are suffering from disabilities.
For a quick little summary of everything we’ve done, check out this cool infographic!
Last but not least, we want to say a huge THANK YOU to all of our volunteers who helped make these projects possible over the last 12 months. It took 272 volunteers a grand total of 1074 man hours to accomplish everything listed above, and we couldn’t have done it without all of you! We’re so thankful to have such a dedicated group of people who help us make Nashville a better place, and we can’t wait to continue to lend a hand to our friends and neighbors in 2015!
– Matt (Team Green’s Event Coordinator)