PLATINUM2024

FRUIT TREE PLANTING FOUNDATION

Planting fruit trees worldwide for healthy communities & a healthy planet!

aka FTPF   |   Pittsburgh, CA   |  www.ftpf.org

Mission

MISSION The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation is a nonprofit charity dedicated to planting edible, fruitful trees and plants to benefit the environment and all its inhabitants. Our primary mission is to plant and help others plant a collective total of 18 billion fruit trees across the world (approximately 3 for every person alive) and encourage their growth under organic standards. FTPF provides support, resources, and guidance for those interested in planting fruit trees and spearheads a variety of planting programs. These programs are aimed at enriching the environment, providing nutritious food sources for wild and rescued animals, and improving human health by bringing delicious, fresh, locally grown raw fruits and vegetables of the highest quality into the lives of all people. VISION We envision a place where one can have a summer picnic under the shade of a fruit tree, breathe the clean air it generates, and not have to bring anything other than an appetite for the healthy fruits growing overhead. A world where one can take a walk in the park during a lunch break, pick and eat a variety of delicious fruits, plant the seeds so others can eventually do the same and provide an alternative to buying environmentally-destructive, illness-causing, chemically-laden products. Simply put, our goal is to encourage and inspire the planting of 18 billion fruit trees around the world. 18 billion fruit trees can spring out of the soul of one human being — we believe in thinking big, and loving even more.

Ruling year info

2002

TreeEO & co-creator

Mr. Cem Akin

Main address

P.O. Box 81881

Pittsburgh, CA 15217 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

75-3020477

NTEE code info

Botanical Gardens, Arboreta and Botanical Organizations (C41)

Agricultural Programs (K20)

Community, Neighborhood Development, Improvement (S20)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

FTPF looks around the world and sees a need for environmental, nutritional, and social reform.

Severe deforestation, global heating, increased drought, and loss of native habitat. In addition, our food system has become a heavy burden on the planet with increasing focus on importation, pesticides, monoculture, depleted and eroded soils, heavy metal toxicity, and water shortages and contamination. Traditional and factory farming destroys native ecosystems, changing both the local and global habitats.

Food insecurity and malnutrition continue to rise in many parts of the world, no matter the country's income level. Food deserts in urban and rural areas mean families lack access to fresh foods. Those in poverty must feed their families solely on packaged, processed foods that provide little nourishment.

A healthy planet and healthy life are rights for all people, not just the privileged few. Planting fruit trees fights for a cleaner, greener, and more sustainable future for all.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Fruit Tree 101

Summary:

Fruit Tree 101 is a program that will create thriving fruit tree orchards in schoolyards around the world so students have a source of improved nutrition and environmental education. The outdoor edible classrooms will not only help clean the air and soil on campus while providing a source of fresh, sustainable, healthy nutrition, but they also give teachers an excuse to hold class outside when it's time for science lessons!

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Students

FTPF’s "Fruit Relief” program involves strategically planting fruit trees in areas where the harvest will most benefit hungry, poor, and needy people—such as homeless shelters, low-income communities, and international hunger relief sites—and distributing fruit trees directly to needy families to have as a source of nutrition in their backyards for decades to follow. As a result of our orchard donations, life-saving sustenance is provided and local volunteers, many of whom are in difficult situations themselves, are empowered to take action for their environment. "Fruit Relief” also involves making donations of fresh produce, either from trees we’ve planted or of the same variety grown in our plantings, to various food relief organizations.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people
Unemployed people

Trees for Tribes helps Native American communities help themselves through the provision of fruit tree orchards that provide an abundant harvest of nutritious fruit for families living in poverty. Tribal members also build their skills, learning to care for their orchards and preserve the harvest. Through this program, FTPF will plant orchards and provide horticultural training for ten communities within three tribes in the northern Plains and the pueblos of the Southwest.

Population(s) Served
Indigenous peoples
Economically disadvantaged people

FTPF’s "Roots of Recovery” program donates fruit tree orchards to facilities where the harvest will help patients and residents with healing—places such as drug rehabs, hospitals, and health centers. Scientific studies confirm that a diet of fruits and vegetables improves health and reduces the risks of leading killers such as heart disease and cancers. For those in recovery, there is no substitute for fresh produce grown with love, compassion, and without harm to the environment.

"Roots of Recovery” plantings are conducted with volunteers who are patients or residents of the facilities where we are planting. Volunteers have reported that planting fruit trees is therapeutic and has long-lasting positive effects on well-being. In short, planting fruit trees is empowering and aids recovery.

Population(s) Served
People with diseases and illnesses
People with disabilities

FTPF’s “Orchards for Animals” program improves lives for rescued animals on sanctuaries by providing fruit trees for shade, shelter, enrichment, and healthy diets. When the trees mature, animals are able to enjoy delicious fruits and foraging opportunities. During times of extreme heat or precipitation, animals can seek shade and shelter under the trees without being away from their food source. Fruit trees allow for the most natural diet available to animals, plucked fresh off the tree with no chemicals or pesticides. The description below is one example of this program area.

Population(s) Served
Adults

FTPF's Fruitful Communities programs aim to make fresh, local, organically grown fruit available for free to the communities by installing orchards in public spaces such as at parks, community gardens, or government buildings. These orchards serve as gathering spaces for recreation, a food sources, learning center, and overall beautify and bolster neighborhoods.

Population(s) Served
Adults

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of trees planted

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of participants engaged in programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

Number of attendees at our tree planting events and workshops

Number of orchard planting events held

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

The number community events in which volunteers help plant their neighborhood's newest fruit trees.

Number of youth participating in tree planting events

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

FTPF is working to solve several of the world's most pressing problems with one simple solution: planting fruit trees.

ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE: Planting in both urban and rural areas helps local and global environments by cleaning the air, water, and soil, offsetting carbon emissions, cooling heat island effect, preventing erosion, and filtering storm water. In areas of extreme deforestation we work to reestablish native ecosystems such as rainforest, jungle, and riparian zones. Just one tree can produce 195lbs of O2, sequester 247lbs of CO2, and filter 10lbs of solid pollutants from the air each year.

FOOD/NUTRITION JUSTICE: Food insecurity and diet-related illness are ravaging world health. Fresh, free, organic, local fruit provides immediate and perennial nutrition for decades. Quality food and nutrition is a right for all people, not just the privileged few. Each mature fruit tree we plant will provide 55lbs of annual harvest, more than enough to feed a family and share with neighbors!

ECONOMIC JUSTICE: Our fruit tree distributions and educational programs provide families with the resources to grow their own food, freeing up those funds for other critical needs. Extra harvests are often sold at market to supplement family incomes.

ANIMAL JUSTICE: The world's wildlife deserve healthy, happy lives just as their human neighbors do. Fruit trees in public spaces and at animal sanctuaries provides food and shade for animals while also benefiting the humans and the environment as described above. Providing high-quality fruit for human populations also lessens the need for animal-based food, lessening both the environmental and ethical impacts on animal husbandry.

In order to address the above challenges and goals, FTPF has created the following strategies:

Plant and encourage others to plant 18 billion fruit trees worldwide, 3 for every person alive

Provide training and education on arboriculture directly to orchard caretakers and the general public

Provide aftercare and continued education in tree care to ensure the orchards serve as longterm community assets

Collaborate with other nonprofits, higher learning centers, and experts to provide information on harvesting, preservation, and culinary skills to serve the fruit

Expose today's youth to the importance of fruit trees for the environment and nutrition to ensure the next generations is prepared to face the coming challenges of food security and climate change

Serve as a resource for the life of the orchards to troubleshoot problems and create the most fruitful, long-lived orchards possible

FTPF staff are expertly trained and capable to complete our mission.

Executive Director: Cem Akin has overseen the planting of thousands of trees on six continents, managed and implemented over 100 tree planting projects in communities around the world, co-authored the fruit tree manual Home Orchard Handbook, and helped with orchard design and maintenance for most FTPF projects.

Arborists: Erik Wilson & Rico Montenegro are both International Society of Arboriculture certified arborists. Erik is additionally a municipally certified tree specialist, and has more than twenty years of professional arboricultural, horticultural, and landscaping experience. Erik is active in youth development, ranging from being a Cub Scout leader to being a board member for Creative Stages Youth Theatre, a community theater for youth. Rico has four decades of experience on four continents, traveling with FTPF to projects in India, Africa, South and Central America, and all across the United States. Rico has consulted on projects for federal, state, and local governments, providing a wide range of horticultural training and advice, and served as an advisor for a number of highly regarded gardening publications including Sunset Magazine. He also has taught fruit tree science at the college level and continues to teach classes in various public settings on fruit tree selection, training, and sustainable management practices. He is licensed to implement Integrated Pest Management (IPM) techniques using cultural, biological and other organic methods. Both will be available for consultation and may serve in advisory roles for these projects.

Programs Manager: Lizzy Rainey started at a volunteer with FTPF in 2014, and after one year of traveling to every possible planting, she joined the team officially in January 2015. During her time with FTPF she has planted trees from Africa to Latin America and all across the United States, with her favorite two projects being those in her home state of Arizona and her part-time home of Hawai'i. She has spend time working on organic farms and has a strong interest in permaculture, horticulture, and expanding people's ability to grow their own food.

Volunteers: We have an extensive network of volunteers that fall into two main categories: those who live in the states and countries where we are donating the orchards, and those who travel with FTPF around the world to assist us in our mission. Combined, these two group make up a network of thousands of annual volunteers, to whom we give enormous credit for the help in making our programs a reality.

The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation has planted thousands of trees and installed hundreds of orchards worldwide for the last decade. Our year over year output continues to grow, with projects affecting tens of thousands of low-income families around the world. Some highlights are below:

Jinja District, Uganda
April 2014-Present: Over 50,000 fruit trees (with thousands more each year) are grown, planted, and distributed in one of Africa's most vulnerable areas. Families receive training and trees in order to fight climate change and feed the populations with quality nutrition. The Prime Minster has requested FTPF's continued presence in the country in order to heal the heath and habitat of the Ugandan people.

El Salvador
2013-Present: As the second most deforested country in the world, FTPF is on a mission to plant 100,000 fruit trees across the country in 10 years. We focus on native and culturally important trees such as the mayan staple “bread nut." One farmer told us in 2016: “Four days ago I cut down about 700 mangoes and by the end of the week it was about 1000 fruits. I support my entire family solely on the income from these mangoes, that is what we are surviving on right now. This program has been extremely important for us."

Vrindavan Fruit Relief, India
August, 2006: FTPF's "Fruit Relief" program implements an ongoing, life-saving effort to donate 200 fruit trees directly to needy families every month. In 2007 alone, FTPF created backyard orchards for more than 700 poverty-stricken families in 27 villages. In August, 2006, FTPF created a large orchard of more than 250 fruit bearing trees and built a water well for Food For Life Vrindavan (FFL), a hunger relief group serving 1200 free meals daily to starving families. Harvest from the orchard will be used to supplement their meals program. The director of FFL wrote: “For us and for our children, FTPF's orchard donation to supplement our hunger relief efforts will literally save lives."

Havasupai Tribe Community Orchard in Supai, Arizona
April, 2007 - May, 2015: FTPF's "Trees for Tribes" program donated over 1000 fruit trees and shrubs to Native American households and created multiple community orchards for the Havasupai tribe. The reservation has no roads leading in and is thus difficult to supply with a consistent source of fresh produce. The village is often referred to as the most remote in the country, requiring that the trees be airlifted down via helicopter. In conjunction with the Havasupai Tribal Administration, FTPF established community fruit tree orchards which are open to all members of the tribe, and planted the remaining trees in residential backyards to provide a healthy source of improved nutrition for decades to follow. When this project is complete, we will have created the first town in the world where every household has access to at least 5 fruit trees in their backyards.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals, To gather tree success and challenge information to improve programs

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection

Financials

FRUIT TREE PLANTING FOUNDATION
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
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  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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FRUIT TREE PLANTING FOUNDATION

Board of directors
as of 01/19/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board co-chair

David Wolfe


Board co-chair

Cem Akin

Ayca Bartlett

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 7/13/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Turkish American
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

Disability

We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.