Letter to the Editor: Thanks to our trees, plants

As we enter a new decade, I’m thinking about what it means to be or to become a good community member. In order to thrive, our community needs support not only from the actions of our governmental bodies but also from the actions of each individual citizen. Through our taxes, we all pay for the services that our government provides, but to be a good citizen, we need to think about other ways that we can contribute to our community.

As volunteer coordinator of the Cherry Hill Environmental Board, I see individual citizens step forward to make a difference in our township’s trail system and green space program on a regular basis. These people help to maintain our 11 trails and assist in promoting green space in our community.

Why is supporting green space important? Trees, plants and shrubs are the silent citizens of our township that contribute in so many ways to support our well-being. Quietly, and with little recognition, plants provide oxygen, store carbon and help to clean our air and water. They provide shade (which can greatly reduce our utility bills) and offer food and shelter to birds and animals. Trees create the beauty of fall color, ease erosion and provide fuel for our fires in winter.

Thanks are due to the many volunteers who step forward to maintain our green space. Thanks are also due to our trees and plants. These quiet community members offer their services every day and ask for little in return. We can all learn from their example.

The Cherry Hill Environmental Board is hosting a special MLK Day of Service on Saturday, Jan. 18 from 9 a.m. to noon at the red barn at Croft Farm in Cherry Hill. We will be doing work on trails, and all ages are welcome. If you are interested in attending, please come at 9 a.m. and wear work shoes. Tools and gloves will be provided.

Barbara Patrizzi