Keep Jefferson Parish Beautiful, a Keep America Beautiful Affiliate, and the Jefferson Parish Department of Environmental Affairs, working together with the Grand Isle Garden Club, were awarded a $5,000 grant from Keep America Beautiful to plant wind and drought resistant palm trees along LA Highway 1.

The grant sponsored by United Parcel Service (UPS), links Keep America Beautiful affiliates with local UPS employees who will provide volunteer support to plant the trees. While UPS will be supplying some of the volunteers for the project, the event is open to anyone interested in putting in an afternoon of work to beautify this unique environment and community.

Volunteers will gather at this Saturday, March 25, 2017 between the hours of 1:00pm and 5:00pm at the Grand Isle Multiplex, located at 3101 Highway 1, Grand Isle.  Volunteers will be planting cabbage (Sabal) palm trees purchased with the grant funds.  Tools and mulch provided by the Jefferson Parish Parkways Department, and holes for the trees will be pre-dug by Mitch’s Landscaping a local tree supplier.  This will allow the volunteers to work efficiently to accomplish the goal in a single afternoon. The palms will replace trees lost to storms that have affected the island over the past several years.

As Louisiana's only inhabited Barrier Island, Grand Isle is a vital first line of defense for the mainland against hurricanes and provides a unique wildlife habitat for many species of marine life and birds. The island’s trees are an important habitat for marine species and birds, including migratory songbirds and shorebirds.  The island plays a major role in the state's seafood, tourism and oil and gas industries.  Anglers from near and far flock to the island thanks to the more than 280 species of fish in the surrounding waters.

The Keep America Beautiful’s grant is one of 30 grant projects that will result in more than 10,500 trees planted in support of locally relevant initiatives.  One aspect of the Keep America Beautiful/UPS grant program, open exclusively to Keep America Beautiful affiliates, is to plant trees that will have a greater likelihood of withstanding natural disasters in communities that have lost a significant number of trees because of recent natural disasters.

Grand Isle has been through a lot in the past several years, from Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Gustav, Ike and Isaac to the BP oil spill disaster, yet the people and spirit of the town have come back stronger than ever.  As a living testament to their strength and resilience, the Grand Isle Garden is planting native palm trees along the main road running through the town to beautify and strengthen the environment of Grand Isle.

Since 2012, The UPS Foundation and its environmental partners, including Keep America Beautiful, have planted more than 5 million trees in 46 countries in its effort to plant, protect and preserve trees in urban and rural areas in the United States and throughout the world.

About Keep America Beautiful

Keep America Beautiful, a leading national nonprofit, inspires and educates people to take action every day to improve and beautify their community environment.  Their vision is a country where every community is a clean, green, and beautiful place to live.  Established in 1953, Keep America Beautiful provides the expertise, programs and resources to help people end littering, improve recycling, and beautify America’s communities.  The organization is driven by the work and passion of more than 600 community-based Keep America Beautiful affiliates, millions of volunteers, and the support of corporate partners, municipalities, elected officials, and individuals.  To learn how you can donate or take action, visit  Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, like us on Facebook, or view us on YouTube.

For more information or to volunteer, contact the Jefferson Parish Department of Environmental Affairs at (504) 731-4612.