The center is a hundred and fifty year-old building. The volunteers have spent about three years to remodel the interior so that it can be used for different purposes. Outside, on the almost one acre lot, they planned a garden in the English style. They carefully planned the creation of the garden, in line with local regulations and after consultations with the city’s Forestry Department and with neighbors.
The tree-planting event was held on a beautiful Saturday. A total of 107 volunteers took part, including people of all ages, from children at elementary school kids to adult volunteers, their family members, friends and neighbors. The event began at nine o’clock in the morning with a small ceremony of young students from Tzu Chi Academy. The organizers then gave a demonstration of how to plant a tree, which takes about 40 minutes for two people to do. At noon, everyone took a break to enjoy the delicious home-cooked vegetarian lunch prepared by the volunteers. Everyone worked together very effectively to plant 188 trees, including white and red oak, sugar maple, hackberry, and pink dogwood.
Will Martin, the landscaping architect, oversaw the progress of the tree-planting progress while helping to plant several trees himself. In just five hours, all the trees were planted. To conclude the event, everyone gathered to give thanks and sang Tzu Chi’s song “Prayer” for a peaceful world free of disasters.
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