Plant With PurposePlant With Purpose is a Christian nonprofit organization that reverses deforestation and poverty in the world by transforming the lives of the rural poor through community development, innovative agriculture and forestry, micro-credit enterprise, and Christian discipleship. Plant With Purpose (formerly Floresta) began through Mount Soledad Presbyterian Church members who are passionate about our stewardship of the earth God created and the dignity of all people. Mount Soledad Presbyterian Church continues a strong partnership with Plant With Purpose. For ways that you can become part of the Plant With Purpose story and mission, click on left side of this page.
Plant With Purpose's History
Plant With Purpose was founded in 1984 by Tom Woodard, a member of Mount Soledad Presbyterian Church. He saw that much of the human misery in the tropics was rooted in deforestation and environmental degradation. In turn, much of the deforestation stemmed from a lack of economic options. Research indicated that deforestation and the resultant loss of soil fertility were primary causes.
Motivated by the Christian call to help the poor, they developed Plant With Purpose to meet the environmental, economic and spiritual needs of the rural people of the Dominican Republic. One of Plant With Purpose’s first projects was to found Los Arbolitos, a for-profit Dominican tree nursery, which could provide a high quality source of tree seedlings and jobs for the Dominican Republic.
In 1987 Plant With Purpose began the Agroforestry Revolving Loan Fund (ARLF) to provide loans, training, and marketing services for poor farmers who wished to start tree-related agroforestry businesses. Over 350 families have since participated in the ARLF and the Dominican Government and national agricultural bank have used it as a model for a nation-wide program.
Plant With Purpose has expanded its program to include community development, the creation of secondary industries and more intentional sharing of the Gospel with the communities involved in the program. We are now in Mexico, Haiti, and Tanzania.