Monarch Research, an organization dedicated to environmental conservation and restoration, is partnering with Mercy Medical Center and UnityPoint Health to launch the “One Child, One Tree – Growing Together” program.
This innovative initiative aims to foster a deep connection between children and nature by offering complimentary native trees to new parents in Linn County.
Under the One Child, One Tree program, new parents are presented with a certificate containing a unique order code. This code enables them to select and order a tree for their child from a diverse list of available species on the Monarch Research website.
Certificates are distributed to parents at various contact points within Mercy Medical Center’s and UnityPoint’s birth care process, including pre-delivery visits, at discharge/checkout, or during a follow-up visit post-birth. If the certificate is offered during a pre-delivery visit, parents have the flexibility to order their child’s tree immediately or in the future.
“The One Child, One Tree program signifies a meaningful opportunity for parents to instill a love for nature and environmental stewardship in their children, creating a lasting legacy for generations to come,” said Clark McLeod, Monarch Research founder and philanthropist, in a news release.
Monarch Research recognizes that not all parents may have a suitable location to plant a tree for their child. To address this, the nonprofit has partnered with Linn County Conservation, which will provide an area within a County Conservation Park, preserve, or natural area where trees are needed as part of restoration goals. These areas will be designated as the ‘Children’s Woodlands’ for One Child, One Tree plantings. Parents choosing this option will receive instructions from Monarch Research as to when and where to plant their tree under the guidance of park rangers.
While Monarch Research manages the program, Mercy Medical Center and UnityPoint Health hospital staff and volunteers help with tree distribution in April and October, aligning with their existing employee Planting Forward program.