Toolkit

Grow Your Initiative

Eager to put Spreading Roots into action? Download this free, informative Urban & Community Forestry Toolkit in its entirety. It’s positively blooming with valuable communications and outreach tools, tips, resources, information, and guidance to help you launch your own local initiatives.

Components and language are informed by the collaborative workshops we held with 50 participants who either come from or have a grassroots affiliation with under-resourced communities within the U.S. and its territories. These attendees brought their unique insights and diverse perspectives concerning seven key demographic groups – Black/African American, Indigenous, Youth, Latine/Latino, Low Income Individuals, and Vulnerable Populations – that are disproportionally impacted by less access to quality trees and green spaces and therefore denied many of the wonderful benefits of nature. From our conversations, we gathered what would be most helpful in launching green space initiatives. Guided by these open discussions and rooted in diverse perspectives, the Urban & Community Forestry Toolkit was created to help you drive meaningful change within your community.

Please note the below Toolkit and supporting elements are drafts. Our team will be continuing to refine and add additional elements throughout the summer. We look forward to receiving your valuable feedback on the content.

Urban & Community Forestry Toolkit

Harvest a Sprig

Have you already started your own trees, green spaces, and nature initiative and only need a few tools to assist you in joining our national movement? Could you benefit from specific communications materials that can help you engage more people within your community? We’ve broken down Spreading Roots Urban & Community Forestry Toolkit into categories so you can reference them quickly and keep your meaningful work growing.

Program Names & Logos

Photography & Illustration

Flyers & Printed Media

Social Media Outreach

Radio Scripts

Phone Scripts

Elevator Speeches

PowerPoint Templates

Video Scripts

Insights from Workshops

Benefits of Urban Forestry Info Sheets

Types of Urban Forestry Info Sheets

Working with Governments Info Sheets

Communicating with and Engaging with Key Demographics Info Sheets

To provide feedback on the toolkit, please fill out our survey.

Additional Resources

Check out these other helpful resources as you cultivate your urban and community forestry initiatives.

Urban and Community Forestry Apps

Arbor Day Foundation Tree Wizard
Tree finder that recommends best trees for you

Forest Metrix
Aerial tree mapping software used to identify trees

i-Tree
Peer-reviewed, tree benefits estimation science

My City’s Trees
Provides custom analyses and reports of urban forests

TreeKeeper
Urban forestry project management software

USFS Tree Owner’s Manual
Comprehensive guide to basic tree care

Vibrant Cities Lab Tool Library
Suite of digital tools and apps for urban forestry groups

Vibrant Cities Lab Urban Forestry Toolkit
Series of resources to help begin an urban forestry project

Conferences

Casey Trees Urban Tree Summit
Focused on the contributions of diverse areas of study

World Forum on Urban Forests
Support cities towards a greener model of urban development

How-Tos: Community Organizing

Philadelphia Orchard Project’s Community Organizing Toolkit
Guide with best practices for increasing involvement

University of Kansas’ Community Toolbox
Comprehensive database of resources, guides, and tools

National Education Association’s Fundamentals of Organizing Toolkit
Collection of strategies and best practices for organizing

Vibrant Cities Lab’s Community Assessment & Goal-Setting Tool
Tool to help shape initiatives at the start of the planning phase

Planting

Audubon Native Plants Database
Search function for identifying native plants based on area

Other

Policy and Planning Tools for Urban Green Justice
Context around gentrification, displacement, and urban forestry

Networks

EnviroAtlas
Explores the benefits people receive from nature

Forests in Cities Network
Network promoting and advancing healthy forested natural areas

Georgia Tech's Urban Climate Lab
Researchers exploring climate change and the built environment

Sustainable Forestry Initiative
Sustainability organization operating in the U.S. and Canada

Sustainable Urban Forest Coalition
Network of organizations advancing urban forestry practices

Treepedia
Uses Google Street View data to measure urban green canopy

Urban Forest Connections
Webinar series with experts on science, practice, and policy

USDA Urban Grower Resources
Financing options, material coordination, marketing, and more

How-Tos: Social Media

HubSpot Social Media Marketing Guide
Social media marketing info and tactics to boost awareness

Canva for Beginners
Free introductory course from Canva

Canva for Nonprofits
Training that focuses on brand development for nonprofits.

California Institute for the Arts’ Fundamentals of Graphic Design
Course that provides an overview of graphic design

Social Movement Technologies’ X for Organizing Webinar
Webinar showing how to use X for organizing and campaigning

X’s Nonprofits Best Practices
Hgh-level guidance on establishing a presence on X

Bloomerang’s Twitter for Nonprofits
Research and insights into when, how, and what to post

TikTok for Good: TikTok Playbook for Non-Profit Organizations
Guidance about how to use the platform for non-profits

Facebook’s Nonprofits Best Practices
Guides on using Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp

Constant Contact’s Facebook for Nonprofits
Guide to Facebook from marketing company Constant Contact

Bloomerang’s Guide to Instagram for Nonprofits
Best practices for how to best engage your audience