HOW WIZO FLORIDA IS MAKING THE NEXT TU B’SHVAT A MILLION TIMES BETTER
By WIZO Florida
Back in 2011, the Miami-Dade Board of County Commissioners approved Miami’s most important environmental initiative—Million Trees Miami—which authorized the addition of one million new trees to the city’s landscape and increasing Miami’s tree canopy from 14% to 30% before the year 2020.
The project has earned overwhelming support from the community and several sponsoring corporations, businesses and organizations across the county, most notably WIZO, the Women’s International Zionist Organization, which stands out for the sheer scope of its participation and commitment to the project.
Founded in 1920, WIZO is a humanitarian aid organization with over a quarter million active volunteers in 53 countries around the world. As the backbone of Israeli society, WIZO cares for more than 75,000 children in over 800 daycares, schools, and social service agencies throughout the country. Their centers provide a full spectrum of assistance to the women and children of Israel, providing vital social services and earning WIZO international recognition and member-status from UNICEF and the United Nations Economic Council.
WIZO Florida, the organization’s Bay Harbour-based agency, was offered partnership in Million Trees Miami by BioPlanet USA, an international non-profit organization committed to the environment. According to Judit Grosiman, WIZO Florida’s Vice President, the collaboration was a natural fit between Bio Planet’s mission and WIZO’s annual celebration of Tu B’Shvat.
“We are thrilled to partner with BioPlanet and Miami-Dade County in the Million Trees Miami project,” Groisman explained. “It’s a perfect opportunity for us to give back to the community in South Florida—Tu B’Shvat is not only a celebration of trees, it is also the celebration of friendship and love among nations.”
This is the second year that WIZO has joined the Million Trees initiative. Last year, WIZO volunteers and their families created the first WIZO Forest by planting over 200 Florida-native trees in North Shore Open Space Park in Miami Beach. As a result, WIZO received the recognition from the City of Miami Beach and the Board of County Commissioners for their stewardship with the environment and commitment to the community.
“We often say that ambitious goals can only be achieved through the consistent and determined collaborations. To this end, we value your partnership and look forward to making the Haulover plantings an ongoing project where we can continue working together. I’m once again honored to extend our thanks and gratitude to you and the WIZO members for your commitment to the Million Trees Miami campaign” said Christina Casado, Director of the Community Image Advisory Board.
Under the leadership of new WIZO Florida Chairperson Ruthy Benoliel, volunteers and friends can now help plant WIZO’s second forest during WIZO’s 2013 Tu B’Shvat Event on January 27, 2013 at Haulover Park, between Bal Harbour and Sunny Isles. It’s a great time to invite family and friends to roll up their sleeves, sponsor a tree, and celebrate South Florida.