LA PUENTE, CA – Bassett Unified families and community members armed with shovels and pails met at Van Wig Elementary School on June 28 to join forces with the San Gabriel Valley Conservation Corps and L.A. County First District Supervisor Hilda Solis to help plant 75 trees, as part of an L.A. County Parks and Recreation beautification project.
The trees – 70 jacaranda and five magnolia – were provided by the county as part of its “Life is Better with Trees” initiative, which has a goal of planting 2,000 trees in four unincorporated areas of L.A. County, including Bassett.
“Thank you to our young students who are working with the Conservation Corps and all they are doing to make Bassett Unified a great District,” Solis said. “What we are doing here is creating an opportunity to have green space, a place to be safe with your family.”
Van Wig Principal Andrew Candelaria and Bassett High Class of 2017 graduate Amber Chacon, who was president of the School’s Ecology Club, took part in a Conservation Corps outreach program and were presented L.A. County certificates of commendation by Solis.
Dozens of Van Wig students and their parents arrived at 9 a.m. to assist in digging holes and planting the trees, meeting with Conservation Corps workers who educated them on environmental justice, green jobs and why trees play an important role in air quality and mental health.
“This is really fun for me,” Van Wig third-grader Jaime Solis said. “I am learning how to plant trees, what kind of vitamins they need and how they clean the air. I can see how they help the world.”
“Life is Better with Trees” was accompanied by a Resource Fair, where residents could speak with L.A. County and non-profit organization representatives about public health, education and social services programs.
Supervisor Solis supported legislation allocating $1 million of Prop A funds to plant trees in unincorporated areas where local youths can assist the Conservation Corps in community outreach.
Five members of the Bassett High School Ecology Club, including Chacon, won a regional environmental competition in June based on the advocacy work they participated in throughout the school year.
“I am so proud of our students and administrators who worked together with our community to enhance the environment of where we live, learn and work,” Bassett Unified Interim Superintendent Dr. Debra French said. “Thank you to the Conservation Corps and Supervisor Hilda Solis for their commitment to this initiative and recognizing members of our District for their hard work.”
072517_BASSETT_CONSVCORPS1: Bassett High School Class of 2017 graduate Amber Chacon and Van Wig Elementary School Principal Andrew Candelaria recieve certificates of commendation presented by Los Angeles County First District Supervisor Hilda Solis for their community outreach with the San Gabriel Valley Conservation Corps during a “Life is Better with Trees” resource fair held at Van Wig on June 28.
072517_BASSETT_CONSVCORPS2: Van Wig Elementary School students pose with their shovels after helping San Gabriel Valley Conservation Corps workers plant 75 trees at the school during a “Life is Better with Trees” resource fair held at Van Wig on June 28, a community outreach program initiated by L.A. County First District Supervisor Hilda Solis.
072517_BASSETT_CONSVCORPS3: Van Wig Elementary School students assist L.A. County Supervisor Hilda Solis and Principal Andrew Candelaria to plant a jacaranda tree during a “Life is Better with Trees” resource fair held at Van Wig on June 28.