SAN ANTONIO, Texas – Bexar Branches Alliance, a San Antonio-based urban forestry non-profit, recently visited five schools to share forestry presentations with 800 fourth and fifth grade students and planted more than 500 trees among the schools.
Bexar Branches Alliance was the recipient of the 2023 Climate Resiliency Grant through the Texas A&M Forest Service Community Forestry Grants program. Through the grant, Bexar Branches Alliance was awarded $50,000 to make impactful improvements to Texas communities and urban forests in its relation to changing environments.
Bexar Branches Alliance was conceptualized in 2020 and was established in 2021.
“Our mission is to expand and preserve the urban forest in an equitable way to ensure an ecologically resilient future for the communities we serve,” said Jaci Randel, Bexar Branches Alliance Executive Director.
Bexar Branches Alliance is comprised of three facets: native tree planting projects, tree maintenance programs and education opportunities for local schools. Through these facets, the non-profit is able to integrate ecological and socioeconomic data to create equitable forestry solutions for Bexar County.
Throughout the fall, Bexar Branches Alliance visited five schools in Bexar County, provided more than 800 students with a forestry educational curriculum and planted more than 500 trees in schoolyards through its Project CANOPY.
Funds from the climate resiliency grant have allowed the non-profit the ability to acquire material and resources, such as trees and educational tree tags, for initiatives like Project CANOPY.
Additionally, Bexar Branches Alliance works alongside neighborhoods in Bexar County to plant and maintain trees while also providing educational and outreach resources to raise awareness about community and urban forestry.
The Texas A&M Forest Service Community Forestry Grants program began in 2023, awarding recipients in two categories, totaling $100,000. This year, the grant program has expanded to eight categories, amounting to $16.65 million.
The submission window for grant applications will open December 11, and will close February 16, 2024. Communities, non-profit organizations and schools interested in applying for this year’s grants can find guidance documents, FAQs, specific requirements and more here: Community Forestry Grants.