Supporting associations

Biodiversit’Haie : a public appeal to protect French landscapes

Creating momentum locally for the emergence of citizen projects for planting and managing trees.

Biodiversit’Haie : a public appeal to protect French landscapes

Project leader
logo Les Planteurs Volontaires

Duration of the partnership


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The project and its challenges

An alarming observation in the Hauts-de-France region…

Less than 9% of the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region is populated with trees, which, compared to an average tree coverage of 31% across France, makes it home to the least-wooded departments in Metropolitan France. More generally, the Hauts-de-France forest represents only 3% of the forest cover in France — an area that is far too small to ensure the restoration of biodiversity and a good living environment for the inhabitants of the region.

These facts, together with global warming and growing urbanisation (1% of the region’s land undergoes artificialisation every year), caused the association Les Planteurs Volontaires to be created. Its objective: to mobilise and involve local inhabitants and stakeholders in a communal, participatory approach to sustainable forestation.


Engaged citizens taking action!

Les Planteurs Volontaires organises community volunteering events to plant trees in the Hauts-de-France region, in collaboration with local stakeholders. Every year, thousands of inhabitants come together to reforest the region and preserve hedgerows, pollarded trees and orchards.


New groups of “volunteer planters”

Given the growing success of their volunteering events in the Hauts-de-France region, Les Planteurs Volontaires wish to expand their actions nationwide. This means propagating their methods by creating local groups to involve as many people as possible in promoting the role trees play in the ecosystem.


The MDM Foundation will support the association in putting together ten local groups in Île-de-France and Nouvelle-Aquitaine. The funds will be put towards:

  • The cost of new trees and planting kits, with the aim of planting 30,000 trees over 2 winters all over France (in addition to the 30,000 trees that the organisation is planting in Hauts-de-France every year);
  • Training local groups in theory and practice, so they can gain independence in project management;
  • The project’s general running costs within the organisation.


Fifty people will be trained and mobilised to manage the ten local groups independently for the long haul.

The inhabitants and primary and secondary schools of the region where the local groups are located will indirectly benefit from the tree planting projects.

In total, the propagation of model in the Paris region and Nouvelle-Aquitaine will therefore benefit more than 2,600 people over the 2-year period (40 inhabitants, 100 primary school and 120 secondary school pupils per local group).

The pros of the project

  • Volunteering events give everyone the opportunity to take concrete action to benefit the environment and contribute to the improvement of their own living environment. They also encourage people to become aware of their responsibilities with respect to the local environment.
  • Planting trees makes it possible for people to reconnect with living things, reconsider the place of nature in their daily lives and re-engage with cultivation.
  • The resolutely active and collective approach fosters social bonds between inhabitants, who work together towards a single goal: reforestation of the local area. This experience shows how trees, with their universal nature, can be a unifying element in society.

“With the help of the MDM Foundation, we can expand and improve public involvement in planting trees”


Jennifer Charon association project manager
logo Les Planteurs Volontaires

Project leader Les Planteurs Volontaires

The association Les Planteurs Volontaires carries out volunteer tree planting events, educational activities and training on the topic of trees. Since its creation in 2013, 230 reforestation projects have been selected in the Hauts-de-France region, representing more than 170,500 trees and shrubs planted and 8,500 citizens mobilised.