10 Reasons to Put HFH on Your Holiday Giving List

Give a smile for 2016 -- Historic Fair Hill

2015 has been a great year for Historic Fair Hill. With every passing year, we’re able to contribute more to our neighborhood. And this is all possible because of the individual donors who provide the vast majority of our funding.

We know there are a lot of charities competing for your attention this holiday season, but we’ve got our fingers crossed that we’ll make your “yes” list. Here’s why.

1. We’re steadily greening our neighborhood.

According to the US Forest Service’s survey of Philadelphia’s tree canopy, Fairhill has only 12 – 19% tree canopy, even though it could support 42 – 49%. In partnership with local residents, Tree Tender volunteers, and the Philadelphia Horticultural Society, we’re moving towards a greener future.

2. We’re beginning to hire locally.

In 2015, we were able to provide two students with after school jobs in our gardens. We’ve also begun employing neighbors for day jobs such as fence painting, and leaf and snow removal. It is our hope to offer more paid work as our organization grows.

3. Our urban gardens provide fresh produce in a food desert.

Our staff, neighbors, and volunteers distributed one thousand pounds of free, fresh produce this year. Residents of a local senior center and other neighbors were able to add more veggies to their meals without the challenges of cost and mobility.

4. We’re filling library shelves…

In 2015, our ongoing book donation program brought six thousand gently used books to schools. Access to books is one of the things that has been consistently proven to improve children’s success in school and so in life.

5. …and helping children read.

Another proven way to help children succeed is to read with them. But in many homes, the adults don’t have time or the access to books to make this happen. Our twenty-one Reading Buddies spend one-on-one time reading with children in the local schools twice a week, giving them the support they need to improve.

6. In 2016, we’re welcoming the community into our green space more often.

Our grounds are always open to the public. And for the coming year, we’ve committed to monthly family-friendly events. A safe, friendly space for neighbors to gather helps weave the fabric of community.

7. We’re helping city kids grow a green thumb.

One of our partner organizations, The Center for Returning Citizens, is a resource for incarcerated and recently released inmates of the prison system and their families. This summer they provided a summer camp for children. We were happy to host them in our green space twice weekly for garden education and outdoor playtime.

8. We help genealogists trace their family histories

In personal tours and online sharing of information, we help people from all over the country (and further afield) as they research their roots.

9. Our children are learning about Philadelphia history and the long struggle for human rights.

Eight wall murals tell stories of William Penn’s holy experiment through 19th century movements for abolition and early women’s rights to current day responses to mass incarceration. We lead field trips with local schools to help them learn about this history.

10. We’ve got even more planned for next year!

20 years ago, the burial ground was a dangerous, overgrown lot. Today, we have a beautiful outdoor space and a growing portfolio of community programming.

And there’s even more coming. This spring, students from a local university will be helping us research in more depth which needs we can fill in Fairhill. Our team is investigating more gardens and larger and more structured Reading Buddies program. We’ve overhauled our website and plan to build it into a community resource. We’ve got plans to broaden our education program to include more topics.

Please help us reach our vision.

Your gift, large or small, means everything to us. The support we’re able to offer in our community is because of the support that generous people provide to us.

To make a secure payment by PayPal or credit card, use the link below.
**Look in the lower left of the screen you’ll see to use a card without a PayPal account.**

Or by mail, send to:

Historic Fair Hill
5501 Germantown Avenue
Philadelphia, PA 19133

Have a beautiful holiday and new year.

Meredith Hutcheson

Meredith joined the Historic Fair Hill team in late 2015. She's been creating content and media since 2008. Strengthening communities both online and off is her passion.

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