Our Programs

See Our Values in Action

Each of Friends’ programs helps us increase equal access to the outdoors and empower people to cultivate vibrant parks, trees, and green spaces.


Matching volunteers with neighborhood parks

Our Adopt-a-Park program matches volunteer stewards with a neighborhood park to lead year-round care. These volunteers host four projects per year, doing things like removing invasive species, beautifying flowerbeds, and cleaning up playgrounds.

Neighborhood Forester

Free and accessible classes led by industry experts

Friends provides training that helps neighbors become knowledgeable in tree planting, maintenance, and identification. We also partner with experts to offer special workshops on topics of interest, such as common Michigan insects, invasive species, and green infrastructure.

Green Your Block

free tree program for neighborhoods​ ​

The Green Your Block program awards funding for planting projects ranging from 10-30 trees within the city of Grand Rapids. Our Urban Forest team assists with site selection, tree ordering and delivery, and planning for the tree planting project.

Outdoor Adventures

Exposing people to new activities in nature

The Outdoor Adventures event series exists to grow inclusion in outdoor activities and prioritizes engagement of community members who may not have previously experienced the featured outdoor activity (i.e. kayaking on the Grand, trekking on park trails, snowshoeing, fat tire biking).

Youth Education

Providing pathways for youth to become change agents

Friend’s Green Team is a paid summer employment program for youth ages 16-20. Members care for newly planted trees while building job skills and being exposed to environmental careers. We also offer hands-on learning opportunities that can be requested by parents, teachers, and even scout troop leaders (activities meet badge requirements!).