Leading a nationwide trend in community concern for habitat loss, the City of Falls Church has been officially designated a National Wildlife Federation Community Wildlife Habitat. The community is invited to a recognition event on Saturday, Sept. 19 at 10:30 a.m. on the steps of Cherry Hill Farmhouse (312 Park Avenue).
In its statement, the NWF commended the dedicated residents of City of Falls Church and the Healthy Habitat Project team for their wildlife conservation efforts and for coming together for a common purpose – to create a community where people and wildlife can flourish.
“The City of Falls Church stands out as a model for other communities to emulate. The knowledge and inspiration that this project has generated will lead City of Falls Church residents and visitors to take better care of their natural world,” the NWF statement said. The City of Falls Church Healthy Habitat Project is sponsored by the Environmental Services Council and is endorsed by the City Council. It was initiated in 2005 and includes several City departments – Public Works, Recreation and Parks, and the Mary Riley Styles Public Library – community organizations like the Village Preservation and Improvement Society, citizen volunteers, and individual homeowners. Contributors in F.C. have included: 139 homeowners certified their backyards as wildlife habitats with the NWF, the Mary Riley Styles Public Library sponsored educational events and displays promoting the project, City staff regularly promoted the project through the City website and environmental publications. the City built five rain gardens and has done continual restoration of many of the City parks so they could be certified as wildlife habitats, Individual citizens have organized invasive plant pulls, composting workshops, and educational workshops in conjunction with City staff. “Providing a home for wildlife in our cities – whether it’s at home, or in schools, businesses or parks – is the demonstration of a healthy and active eco-system.”