IDEAS For Us | June 3, 2014

“1,000 Trees Jax” Wins Funds at One Spark

1,000 Trees Jax is an initiative which aims to plant 1,000 trees in areas throughout Jacksonville, Florida which merit restoration. The project is being spearheaded by IDEAS organizers; Jenna Jennings and Viktor El-Saieh.


One Spark is the world’s largest crowd-funding festival, established in 2013 in Downtown Jacksonville. So what is a crowd-funding festival? Imagine Kickstarter or Indiegogo —- in person. Within the span of 20 city blocks in downtown Jacksonville; every corner, office building, bar or multi-purpose venue is home to a different project being displayed by One Spark “Creators” for a period of four days.

The entire system is based on voting. Individuals who attend the festival download the app and vote for projects they would like to see implemented from five main categories – Art, Innovation, Music, Science and Technology. They can also donate directly to the project.


The top three projects that receive the most votes defend their projects to a jury who decides which one will receive the $10,000 prize for each category. The remaining projects are allocated a percentage of the $200,000 in general funding available based directly on how many votes they received.

1,000 Trees Jax received 286 votes (0.24% of the total vote) which translates to $556.53 raised.


The project is premised on a model that is being tested by IDEAS organizers through which a partnership is established with officials from relevant city and county departments. The sites which merit restoration are determined by these officials and the fundraising and implementation is managed by Jennings and El-Saieh. Although this model is fairly simple, it is still being perfected.

Basically, for about $30 you can plant a small tree in an area in Jacksonville which merits restoration. The majority of funds raised are used to purchase the trees themselves – the city tells you where to plant them and provides tools, the organizers fundraise and volunteers do the planting.


At the moment, organizers are working with the city to coordinate an ideal location for the first planting while they wait to receive their funding from one spark. Over 50 volunteers signed up to help and a handful of organizations and companies expressed interest in supporting this project.

– Viktor El-Saieh

1,000 Trees Jax was made possible with support from the Florida Next Foundation, which hosted the project at it’s venue in Downtown Jacksonville.

For more information on One Spark, check out their website here: