By Dennis Seid/NEMS Daily Journal
BLUE SPRINGS – Yes, they’re busy learning how to build cars, but several hundred workers from Toyota Motor Manufacturing Mississippi will be taking time off to beautify, revitalize and restore areas on federal, state and local public land in Lee County.
On Saturday, from 9 a.m. to noon, some 600 Toyota Mississippi workers and their families will be at several sites to mark National Public Lands Day. It’s the fourth time TMMMS is involved in the event.
“We are proud to support organizations and activities that help make communities a beautiful place for our team members and their families to live,” said Emily Holland, the external affairs specialist for the plant.
Team members, as Toyota calls its employees, will be at the Natchez Trace Parkway Visitors Center, Trace State Park, Tupelo High School, Carver Elementary School, Ballard Park and the Oren Dunn Museum doing a variety of chores.
They’ll be clearing trails, picking up trash, pulling weeds, painting handrails, cleaning up playgrounds and restoring a barn, as well as teaching children about the environment and nature.
Now in its 18th year, National Public Lands Day is a project of the national Environmental Education Foundation. It was established in 1994 to carry on the legacy of the Civilian Conservation Corps, a program to revive communities and create opportunities for employment following the Great Depression. NPLD draws tens of thousands of volunteers to sites across the country. Last year, 170,000 volunteers worked at more than 2,080 sites in every state, the District of Columbia and in many U.S. territories.
Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A., the sales and marketing arm of Toyota Motor Corp., has sponsored the NPLD program for the past 13 years. Last year, more than 3,500 Toyota employees volunteered at 41 different public land areas in 19 states and U.S. territories.