In August of 2018, Shields was awarded a State Contract for DCR’s Greening the Gateway Cities Program. During our initial kick-off meeting we learned that we would be helping to brand and launch their “phase one” pilot program. To be a part of this program, recipients needed to be a resident or business in certain zones of Chelsea, Fall River, and Holyoke MA. If you qualify, DCR provides free trees to increase tree canopy cover in these select urban residential areas.

The program was created with a goal to increase the number of trees planted in urban residential areas of the Massachusetts Gateway Cities. It’s also designed to reduce household heating and cooling energy use by increasing tree canopy cover in urban residential areas while improving the aesthetic appearance of these neighborhoods.

Through the GGCP program, trees ranging from 6ft to 10ft tall are planted by foresters from the Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) Urban & Community Forestry Program, with crews hired from local communities. When a potential tree recipient signs up, a DCR forester will visit their home to determine the best location and species of tree for energy efficiency. Foresters also conduct year-round site visits and are available to answer questions.

Following is a sampling of the rebranding efforts to date. These include logo design, web design, a social media campaign, print materials, public relations efforts and more. We subtitled the program MA Urban Canopy and you can visit to learn more. On Thursday, December 13th Shields was asked to present these marketing materials at the Community Partners Learning Session 2018. Other speakers included Bob O’Connor, Emmanuel Owusu, Mathew Cahill, Francisco Rodriguez and AnneMarie Golden. This was an enlightening experience that helped us to connect the dots and see the program, and all its benefits, as a whole. The session was attended by DCR personnel, foresters and non-profits from across the Commonwealth. We are including a few photos from that inspiring event