A Vibrant Network of Cities Engaging Citizens to Address Local Needs

Nashville wins Cities of Service
Blueprint Contest
Albuquerque, Orlando, and Philadelphia Also Recognized 

201 Cities of Service

to inspire and support mayors
and city officials to improve city life
through impact volunteering.

Storm Busters

Featured City

Nashville, TN

Storm Busters

In May 2010, because 14 inches of rain fell in a two-day period, Nashville experienced a historic flood that brought devastation to the city’s infrastructure and environment. Additionally, the powerful rains had flooded the city’s rivers, streams, and creeks collecting and carrying materials downstream. Debris blocked and buried in the waterways was dangerous for the environment and to its citizens due to the potential for erosion and water damage. 

Together with the mayor, the chief service officer outlined high-impact volunteer initiatives in the Impact Nashville Service Plan, including planting trees and rain gardens in flood-affected areas to help absorb and manage stormwater and to put in place a stronger natural absorption system for future rain events.

Since 2010, HandsOn Nashville, the Cumberland River Compact, and other local conservation organizations have planted more than 7,300 trees and 60 rain gardens across the city, mitigating well over 2.5 million gallons of stormwater. In addition, thousands of volunteers are working to restore Nashville’s vast number of waterways. To date, volunteers have assessed more than 200 miles of waterways and cleaned 30 miles of waterways, removing nearly 300 tons of trash and debris. Nashville citizens will continue to implement preventative measures in efforts to create a more resilient and healthy infrastructure for its citizens and the planet.

Featured Mayor

Karl Dean

Mayor Karl Dean

Nashville, TN

Mayor Dean created the Excellence in Volunteer Engagement Certification and the Mayor’s Workplace Challenge to spread awareness and increase the use of impact volunteering. Both initiatives are first of their kind in the nation. 


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