Internet campaign #TeamTrees grew out of a May 2019 challenge for YouTube influencer Jimmy “MrBeast” Donaldson to plant 20 million trees in honor of reaching 20 million subscribers on the video platform. His fans then suggested teaming up with other social media influencers to turn the ambitious goal into reality.
“They wouldn’t let it go,” said Donaldson via YouTube. “All my video comments were about trees! I want to give our generation a chance to do more than just ‘retweet activism.’ We’re giving people a chance to take real action and genuinely make a difference.”
The result of that challenge is the #TeamTrees campaign in conjunction with the Arbor Day Foundation, which entails more than 600 social media influencers from 21 countries with a combined total of more than 1 billion followers looking to raise $20 million by January 1, 2020. For every dollar raised, the Arbor Day Foundation will plant one tree in a forest of high need on public or private land. The goal is to plant trees on every continent except for Antarctica.
The #TeamTrees influencer list includes MrBeast, Ninja, Mark Rober, Preston, Unspeakable, Marshmello, jeffreestar, jacksepticeye, Zach King, Hannah Stocking, Collins Key, Joey Graceffa, FaZe Rug, Marques Brownlee, and it continues to grow.
Donaldson, who currently boasts over 25 million YouTube subscribers, along with Preston Arsement and Texas native Nathan “Unspeakable Gaming” (who doesn’t share his full name online) are all represented by Night Media, a Dallas-based influencer talent management company.
The campaign originated on YouTube, but its influencers represent a range of social media platforms including Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Snapchat, Twitch, Mixer, Twitter, and reddit. The campaign officially kicked off this weekend.
“We’ve been hustling behind the scenes for months and now we can tell the world,” said YouTuber and ex-NASA engineer Mark Rober via YouTube. “This is like The Avengers of YouTube, if the Avengers planted trees. We’re only going to win if everyone comes together around the common goal.”
#TeamTrees influencers will livestream and post videos to drive donations to TeamTrees.org. Donations can be made at TeamTrees.org, via a YouTube donate button, through Arbor Day’s #TeamTrees Facebook fundraiser, or the #TeamTrees tiltify fundraiser. All donations are sent directly to the Arbor Day Foundation.
#TeamTrees Campaign Director, Matt Fitzgerald, said the goal is to plant trees on every continent except Antarctica. “Although if the ice keeps melting, we may need to plant some trees there too,” he says.
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