Trust for Public Land, Macy’s Partner to Support Local Community Schoolyard Initiative
Trust for Public Land (TPL) and Macy’s have partnered to support TPL’s transformative Community Schoolyards™ initiative. Under the company’s work guided by their social purpose platform, Mission Every One, Macy’s will help to transform public schoolyards into community parks and green spaces to help ensure healthy, livable communities for generations to come. In 2022 the partnership raised more than $1.5 million for the initiative.
“Transforming schoolyards is cost-effective, multi-benefit solution for improving health, learning, and climate resilience for underserved communities and students across the U.S. This model has been tested in dozens of school districts with tremendous success and we are excited to continue this mission with Macy’s,” said Danielle Denk, National Schoolyards Director with Trust for Public Land. “Trust for Public Land is proud to partner again with Macy’s to help support this initiative and get more people across the country connected to the outdoors.”
Between April 1-30, Macy’s customers and colleagues will have the opportunity to round up in-store or donate online to support TPL’s Community Schoolyards initiative to transform our nation’s asphalt schoolyards into vibrant, green spaces.
“As we enter into our second year of partnership, Macy’s is thrilled to again work with Trust for Public Land to support its Community Schoolyards Initiative, helping to transform asphalt schoolyards into vibrant green spaces,” said Sam DiScipio, Macy’s senior director, corporate communications – social impact. “These spaces act as a place for communities to connect, while improving education, reducing anxiety and supporting climate resiliency and aligns with Mission Every One’s focus on caring for people and managing environmental impact.”
Of the 90,000 public schools in the country, only a tiny fraction have schoolyards that are green and inviting, as well as open to the public after school and on weekends. Most are overheated, vacant, and uninspired. Opening all public schoolyards during non-school hours would put a park within a 10-minute walk of nearly 20 million people—solving the problem of outdoor access for one-fifth of the nation’s 100 million people who don’t currently have a park close to home.
A recent study by TPL found that nationwide, 36 percent of the nation’s 50.8 million public school students attended school in a heat island, which is defined as 1.25 degrees Fahrenheit warmer or more, on average, than the surrounding town or city. Renovated schoolyards have climate superpowers, as specially landscaped gardens, bioswales, and porous surfaces absorb stormwater, preventing floods and cooling downplay spaces.
This year, TPL is celebrating 50 years of preserving and enhancing the outdoor places that fuel collective health and represent our nation’s rich array of lived experiences, the organization is embarking on a year of community investments and impact. The organization has worked with local, state, and national partners to preserve nearly 4 million acres and create or enhance more than 5,364 community parks, putting quality green space within a 10-minute walk of nearly 9.4 million people.
With 100 million people, including 28 million children, lacking a park or green space within a 10-minute walk from home, there is much work to be done to close this significant access gap in America. The disparities are worse for people of color and low-income communities, which is why, in the U.S., zip code is often a better indicator of public health and lifespan than genetic code.