April 4, 2023
Volunteerism in Indianapolis
By: Jeremy Kranowitz
At Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, we rely on thousands of Hoosiers every year who help us co-create a city that is cleaner, greener, healthier, and safer.
Last year, everyday citizens happily donated 16,660 hours to help us plant trees, create new greenspaces, and remove litter from our streets. When one of us lends a hand, it supports everyone in Indy.
A recent study by AmeriCorps found that Indianapolis is in the top 15 metropolitan areas in the country in terms of “formal volunteering,” with 35% of the public engaged. The most engaged city is Provo, Utah, with 62% of the public engaged in formal volunteering. That’s almost twice what we’re doing here!
If you’re one of those folks in that third of the population that helps us out, we’re so grateful! If you’re part of the other 65%, now is the time to help, and we would love to have you! Check out www.kibi.org/projects to find an opportunity to do your part.
Here are some ways you can make a difference:
The trees we plant are going into neighborhoods that currently have half the amount of trees of the average neighborhood. The leaves on trees help filter air pollution. The roots and leaves suck up excess water when it rains and help reduce street flooding. And of course, they help cool down hot streets in the summer with their cool shade. Trees also provide homes for hundreds of other species that help keep our environment more biodiverse and healthier. We can’t plant all those trees without help – we need you!
KIB has co-created over 60 greenspaces and pocket parks around the city over the years that are still actively maintained and supported by community members. Many neighborhoods do not have a City park nearby, so these pocket parks serve an important purpose to help connect people to safe, outdoor places to gather and for children to play. We create three new greenspaces per year, and it’s with your help! Request a new one at https://www.kibi.org/greenspace.
We also need your help keeping our streets looking tidy. We have over 700 individuals who regularly agree to help pick up around their block. Did you know that KIB will give you all the supplies you need, including gloves, bags, litter grabbers, and more? We’ll also give out native plants and a native tree to help you beautify your block right by your home or business! Check it out at www.kibi.org/aab.
Now that it’s finally warming up outside, if you notice a street without trees, a neighborhood without a park, or a block that has a lot of litter, now’s the time to be part of the solution. Together, we can all be proud to call Indy our home.