Every year, OUC partners with the Florida Urban Forestry Council (FUFC) and Keep Orlando Beautiful (KOB) to bring the TreeCircus, a program that teaches about the value of trees in our everyday lives, to elementary schools in the Orlando area. This year, Erin Givens, Vegetation Management Specialist and Tim Womick, TreeCircus founder, presented to over 1,000 students in just one week. Read on to learn how this program helps youth in our service territory develop green thumbs!
What is TreeCircus?
Womick describes TreeCircus as “a fast-paced, highly animated, interactive, tree-mendous occasion that is based on the question ‘what do trees give us?’”
The TreeCircus travels across the United States, engaging students through jokes and jingles and encouraging them to think differently about the trees around us. In each presentation, students learn the basics of biology and the importance of planting trees, all while laughing and having fun.
OUC’s Role in TreeCircus
As a Tree Line USA utility for 20 years, OUC continues to demonstrate how trees and utilities can co-exist for the benefit of the community and its citizens. Our continued partnership with the FUFC allows us to host TreeCircus presentations at schools in our service area.
Givens serves as FUFC’s Vice President and coordinates the TreeCircus when OUC is responsible for hosting. And, as a certified arborist, Givens’ gets her hands dirty showing students how to plant a tree during each TreeCircus presentation.
“Without the support of OUC and other members of the FUFC, the TreeCircus message and unique presentation would not reach the number of children that it currently does,” said Womick.
Why is TreeCircus Important?
“My hope is that, when those kids get up and leave, they look at trees differently because they are the future, and understand that ‘yes, I can make a difference!’” said Womick.
Givens stresses the importance of educating children about the relationship between trees and utilities in addition to sharing the ways that they enrich the environment.
“TreeCircus gives us a chance to educate the youth on the many benefits trees provide our community, such as oxygen, food, and wildlife habitat,” said Givens. “My favorite part is watching the kids get excited about trees. There is nothing better than planting a tree with a child.”
To learn more about OUC’s tree trimming services and why maintaining trees increases OUC’s reliability visit https://www.ouc.com/about-ouc/reliability/tree-trimming-services.