Howard forestry project firmly rooted in Israel 'Jerusalem 3,000' effort marks city's anniversary

February 26, 1996|By Alisa Samuels | Alisa Samuels,SUN STAFF

Howard County Jewish congregations, groups and families are making Israel more beautiful and environmentally better as the tiny nation prepares to celebrate the 3,000th anniversary of its capital.

The effort is part of the Jewish National Fund of America's "Jerusalem 3,000" project, which was launched last month to plant 1.5 million trees in the "Green Belt" around Jerusalem. The fund-raising project, which lasts until February 1997, comes as Israel celebrates the anniversary of King David's conquering of Jerusalem.

Since the Jewish National Fund's establishment in 1901, more than 300 million trees have been planted in the 25,000 acres known as the Green Belt, said Diane Scar, executive director of the Jewish National Fund, Maryland-Delaware. The international foundation was established to purchase land for Jewish people, and now owns or manages 70 percent of the land in Israel, she said.

Howard County completed a 10,000-tree forest in Israel in November 1994. Residents hope to add to that by planting five 100-tree gardens in the Green Belt, Ms. Scar said. At $18 each, trees include pines, cedars and oaks.

"Neighborhoods adjoining the Green Belt will have their own thriving forests and parks, which will be essential resources for families in an urban area," said Yale Stenzler, chairman of the county's Jewish National Fund Commission.

If 1.5 million trees are planted during this campaign, the Green Belt will be complete, Ms. Scar said.

For information, call Ms. Scar at (410) 486-3317.

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