Pandemic Changes Environmental Project to Support Multiple, Urban Communities

Urban Tree Planting - PhiladelphiaSubmitted Images

BALA CYNWYD, PA — Philadelphia Insurance Companies (PHLY) employees are used to literally getting their hands dirty while giving back to the community. More than 100 employees have physically planted trees over the last six years in rural communities impacted by natural disasters. But this year, travel and social distancing challenges brought on by the pandemic forced the Company to refocus its annual mission to plant 80,000 trees.

Eighty-seven PHLY employees planted nearly 150 trees in the ground in Kansas City, Denver, and Philadelphia during September and October. The projects are part of the company’s PHLY 80K Trees partnership with the Arbor Day Foundation that began in 2015. The mission is to support forests and communities in need by planting trees to help purify our air and restore the environment.

Trees offer vast benefits for communities. Thriving urban forests bolster human health, from encouraging physical activity to reducing respiratory illnesses stemming from air pollution. In the United States, park trees alone remove about 75,000 tons ($500 million) of air pollution each year. And urban trees reduce runoff of sediment, pollutants, and organic matter into streams, improving our water quality. Trees have also been shown to reduce crime, lower stress levels, and develop community pride.

“We are proud to encourage and support local efforts to plant trees. Cities and towns around the globe that line their streets and fill their parks with trees are building healthier, happier communities,” said Dan Lambe, president, Arbor Day Foundation.

The Arbor Day Foundation will lead additional projects across the U.S. to complete the 80,000 commitment from PHLY. In previous years, PHLY employees planted trees in Bastrop State Park in Texas and Daniel Boone National Forest in Mount Victory, KY. The goal to fund the planting of 80,000 trees each year is reached with the help of PHLY’s independent agents, brokers, and policyholders who signed up for paperless statements. The Company uses the cost savings from each year’s new paperless enrollees to fund plantings the following year.

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“Our employees are excited to continue our PHLY80K Trees program this year after we had to postpone in-person volunteer activities in 2020,” shared Brian O’Reilly, chief marketing officer at Philadelphia Insurance Companies. “Since starting this mission in 2015, we’ve been able to fund the planting of 480,000 trees with our partners at Arbor Day. Tens of thousands of those trees were physically planted by TEAMPHLY, which is an annual experience our employees cherish.”

For more information about the initiative, please go here.

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