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May 09, 2023

Help beautify Philly's green spaces during Love Your Park Week

Volunteers are needed to plant flowers, pick up trash and remove graffiti at 94 recreational spaces from May 13-21

Family-Friendly Volunteering
Love Your Park Week Philadelphia Parks and Recreation/Flickr

Volunteers are needed to help clean up Philadelphia's green spaces during Love Your Park Week, held May 13-21. Tasks include weeding, trash collection and flower-planting.

People who enjoy spending time at Philadelphia's parks, community gardens and other green spaces have an opportunity to give back later this spring.

Philadelphia Parks and Recreation and the Fairmount Park Conservancy are hosting cleanups at 94 parks and green spaces during Love Your Park Week, held Saturday, May 13 through Sunday, May 21. Volunteers are needed to pull weeds, pick up trash, remove graffiti and plant flowers ahead of summer. Tools, gloves and other equipment will be provided.

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"This is one of the ways to not only make your own life better but to also contribute to the quality of life in your neighborhood and to show elected officials how much parks mean to you," Maura McCarthy, CEO of the Fairmount Park Conservancy, told KYW

Though the cleanups are free to join, organizers request that volunteers sign up so that there are enough tools and gloves to go around. Volunteers are encouraged to come out on their own, or with their families or other groups. 

Volunteering offers physical and mental health benefits, particularly for older adults, according to Mayo Clinic. Volunteer activities keep people moving for extended periods of time, providing exercise and keeping the brain active. Research shows volunteering helps to reduce stress, which lowers the risk of heart disease, stroke, depression and anxiety. 

Volunteering also reduces feelings of loneliness, helping people build friendships and communities, and sparks the release of endorphins, which create a sense of well-being, VeryWell Mind reported. 

The map below shows the green spaces where clean-ups are being held. Volunteers can register for the clean-ups on the Fairmount Park Conservancy's website.

Some of the groups offering volunteer opportunities also will have music, food, games and other activities for people of all ages in hopes of encouraging residents to visit and meet up with members of their communities. 

On Saturday, May 13, volunteers at Fairview Park in Roxborough can enjoy coffee and donuts during a morning of mulching, planting and weeding native plant beds. At Tip Top Playground in Fishtown, volunteers can eat refreshments and play games while clearing out the facility and learning about upcoming renovation plans. 

The Fernhill Park cleanup also will pair light refreshments with weeding and flower planting. 

And at Philly Pumptrack, located along the edge of Fairmount Park, volunteers will prepare the park's rain garden, collect trash and repair its fence so that bike riding can begin later in the day. 

For more information about Love Your Park Week, visit the Fairmount Park Conservancy's website

Love Your Park Week

May 13-21
All day | Free registration
94 parks in Philadelphia