- Massachusetts Probation Service
Media Contact for Community Service and Court Facilities collaborate on statewide Tree Planting Project
Coria Holland, Communications Director
Massachusetts — Probationers, who are sentenced by a judge to perform community service as part of the Massachusetts Trial Court Community Service Program, will be planting flowering Kousa Dogwood trees at each of five different court sites across the Commonwealth beginning this week.
“We are excited about the opportunity to engage probationers in a pro-social community activity that allows them to be part of a larger social movement while taking responsibility for their local community,” said Vincent L. Lorenti, Director of the Office of Community Corrections.
The statewide planting of the Kousa Dogwood trees is a collaborative effort between Community Service and the Trial Court Facilities Department. The Kousa Dogwood — also known as Chinese, Japanese, or Korean Dogwood — reaches a mature height of 20 to 30 feet and grows under a variety of conditions. This celebration of nature kicks off tomorrow at Barnstable Superior Court followed by plantings in Palmer, Somerville, Milford, and Salem.
The following plantings are scheduled for this week at 9 a.m.:
Barnstable Superior Court, 3195 Main Street, Tuesday, June 25
Palmer District Court, 235 Sykes Street, Wednesday, June 26
Somerville District Court, 175 Fellsway, Thursday, June 27
Milford District Court, 161 West Street, Friday, June 28
Ruane Courthouse/Salem, 56 Federal Street, Friday, June 28
Year-round, probationers perform approximately 200,000 community service hours statewide as an alternative to incarceration and in lieu of paying court costs. The Community Service Program is part of Probation’s Office of Community Corrections which includes 18 community corrections centers statewide. Offenders are transported from the centers or courts to the project sites where they perform a range of tasks — both traditional and non-traditional. This work includes trash pick-up along streets and highways; set-up of classrooms for the school year by moving furniture and painting walls; building cages for oyster seeds at state fisheries; stocking and distributing food at local soup kitchens; and setting up 1,000’s of chairs and tables for community concerts and events. This work has also led to full-time employment for many offenders.