Your Support is Doubled for Giving Tuesday

Giving Tuesday is a global movement dedicated to giving back to organizations and causes you care about. Today on November 30, your donation will go twice as far thanks to the generosity of a longtime supporter who is offering a dollar-for-dollar match on any gifts we receive up to a total of $25,000! We hope you consider making a special one-time gift, becoming a new PEC member, or renewing your existing membership.

Autumn colors in Shenandoah National Park. Credit: Hugh Kenny/PEC

Seeing the forest and the trees

The vibrant colors of the forests this fall have been a source of inspiration and hope for thousands of residents and millions of visitors to the Piedmont region.

Whether an individual tree with a complete crown in full display or the more complex patterns of a forested hillside, the effect is an awesome reminder of the power of the natural world to refuel and recenter our lives around a sense of place.

This region we all appreciate is only beautiful and sustainable because of the continued effort over time from individuals like you, from local leaders, and from groups committed to engaging and empowering residents to make positive change, like we do here at The Piedmont Environmental Council.

Volunteers plant a tree at Sky Meadows State Park. Credit: Sophia Chapin/PEC

Connecting landscape and community

Participating in the PEC-sponsored riparian planting at Sky Meadows in October got me thinking about trees and forests and the importance of connecting the dots.

The planting took place in the Goose Creek watershed where the collective efforts of hundreds of individuals and groups over 20 years has resulted in critical reforestation along stretches of headwater streams and cleaner drinking water for hundreds of thousands of Virginians across three counties. This effort helps make tangible the long-term push for improved water quality in all of our waterways and, ultimately, the Chesapeake Bay.

Each tree planted also represents the retention of thousands of gallons of precipitation as well as important habitat for wildlife. As individual planting and buffer projects connect, they provide the patches and pathways for critical migration and adaptation for a multitude of species at risk due to climate change.

Ragged Mountain Reservoir in Albemarle County. Credit: Hugh Kenny/PEC

Working together to make a difference

Just like the forests that flow down the slopes of the Blue Ridge and along the Piedmont region’s rivers and streams, scenic roads, and property lines, PEC is a mosaic of programs and activities that all contribute to better communities and an increasingly conserved and restored landscape. Conservation easements, public access projects, community development planning, local food systems, and a deeper understanding of our history and the choices we face in the future all contribute to a more sustainable region.

The solace that autumn foliage represents is a welcome counterpoint to the tough challenges and complex choices facing our communities.

It is my hope that we can all see both the forests and trees as valuable to our collective future and critical for long term resilience in the face of unprecedented change. Your gift this #GivingTuesday helps strengthen environmental protection in the Virginia Piedmont and has ripple effects within and beyond our region.

Your support—whether it be in the form of time, money, or direct action—is invaluable! Thank you!