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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Environment, Forest Conservation, Recycling

Mission: Canopy plants and cares for trees where people need them the most. We bring the life-giving benefits of trees to the schools, neighborhoods, and public spaces of the San Francisco Mid-Peninsula. Our vision is a day when every resident of the Mid-Peninsula can walk, play, and in all ways thrive under the shade of healthy trees. Together, we can bring this vision to life!

Results: Canopy has planted thousands of trees in Palo Alto, East Palo Alto and Mountain View. We have a 96% survival rate for newly planted trees. We've also reached hundreds of school kids with our education programs, helping them learn about the environment. We engage hundreds of volunteers of all ages and backgrounds in our tree planting and tree care. Canopy also advocated for our urban forest with local and state governments.

Target demographics: Mid-Peninsula residents of all ages.

Direct beneficiaries per year: In 2015, we planted 269 drought-tolerant trees, tended 1,716 young trees, engaged over 1,269 volunteers, and reached 1,183 kids through educational activities!

Geographic areas served: Palo Alto, East Palo Alto, and the greater Mid-Peninsula area.

Programs: Tree Plantings; Tree Care; Tree Walks; Education and Outreach; Right Tree in the Right Place; Teen Urban Forester Internships; Community Outreach; Advocacy.

Community Stories

5 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As a local teacher, I have partnered with Canopy for several years to offer the Walter Hays Elementary School 4th graders an "interactive field lesson" at El Palo Alto Park. The students spend the morning learning the history and science of our namesake tree, as well as learning about the local ecosystem that supports it. Canopy provides the students with experiences in measuring the height, diameter, and circumference of on-site trees, including the famous El Palo Alto. The students learn a lot about our "living California landmark" and how it has stood the test of time. The students are always fully engaged and very enthusiastic about the lessons. They think it is so "cool" to learn about "our tree!"

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Canopy is an outstanding example of a tree-focused community-benefit organization.
I have worked with Canopy (for three years, as of Oct 2016) on technical aspects of tree planting and care, and have noticed that they are remarkably proactive and forward-thinking in ensuring that the planted trees survive, grow, and actually provide the benefits that urban trees can provide. I note that Canopy not only has great links and is actively engaged with the local communities they serve, but the organization is also well-connected to local experts and arborists (and, not surprisingly, those two reasons are a part of why Canopy-planted trees look and perform great!).

2 Tree Dockter

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

Re: a Thank you from the Dockters, responding to the Canopy Board Match, Silicon Valley Gives program, connecting people with nature, like your friend, the late Nobel Peace Laureate Wangari Maathai: "When we plant trees, we plant the seeds of hope and the seeds of Peace".

Catherine & Board: Thank you for the gratitude email to Eileen and I.

You enable us to be directly involved with nature-based programs in a way that ‘without you’ we would probably not be engaged in a similar way.

You guys are the best at what you do--seemingly always keeping things fresh, up-to-date and on pace with the technology speed of Silicon Valley.

I thank you for the leadership you have utilized thru the 2007-2014 economic season, and support you to flourish in the new season of growth for the community.


David & Eileen Dockter, Canopy Contributors

Dave Dockter
Urban Forestry Group, ASCA, ISA, APA
City of Palo Alto Public Works - Urban Forestry Section
Email: dave.dockter@cityofpaloalto.org

Previous Stories

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

The City of Palo Alto urban forest has been growing in private yards and city land for more than a century. The most critical time for all of the trees has been in the last decade. The involvement of the Canopy organization with the community as well as city tree programs has filled a critical gap and continues to do so. Canopy has become a regional resource for many cities in the Bay Area because their leadership vision is broad, their services are beneficial and contractor referral services are sought after by residents, architects and cities alike.


Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Partnering with Canopy is a pleasure and always productive. The staff and board go way beyond the call of duty to partner with other nonprofits. I have learned a lot from the experience and appreciate the expertise and generosity of the volunteers and staff.