Daily CSR
Daily CSR

Daily CSR
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‘Horticulture and Education Center’ Opens In School For The Blind


Green Mountain Energy among others offer grants to create accessible education and horticulture centre for the children of Overbrook School for the Blind.

Dailycsr.com – 22 May 2019 – On Friday, May 10, 2019, the local officials joined the staff, students as well as the board of trustees in the “Overbrook School for the Blind” to cut ribbon and celebrate the “opening of the M. Christine Murphy Horticulture and Education Center” which has been planned as a “Net Zero Energy greenhouse” and has acquired the “LEED-Silver” certification.
The building occupies an area of “1,780 square-foot” and features the “award-winning Farm” as well as “Table program and horticulture therapy activities”, while the name of the centre has been kept to honour the memory of “M. Christine Murphy”, an ex-trustee along with a neighbour and a “longtime friend of Overbrook School for the Blind”.
The cost of construction was over “$1 million” which came in part through “a generous memorial contribution from Murphy’s husband”, Sid Rosenblatt, who is a present member of the OSB board, while the “Green Mountain Energy Sun Club” also offered a grant of over “$200,000”. In the words of the chief executive officer as well as the executive director of the OSB, Todd Reeves:
“The creation of the M. Christine Murphy Horticulture Education Center represents a tremendous opportunity for our students. Beyond the gardening, nutrition and health and wellness benefits, this project will no doubt amplify many long-term goals we seek to foster in our students, including vocational experiences, greater independence and the values of lifelong learning.”
While, the board president of OSB, Warwick S. Wheeler said:
“Sid and his family are extraordinarily generous supporters of OSB’s highest priority - our students. We are deeply grateful for Sid’s longtime partnership and his exceptional support of this project.” 
Furthermore, the husband of late M. Christine Murphy, Sid Rosenblatt added:
“Overbrook was a place in Christine’s heart. She was forever telling people to go to campus to see the work that they do at the school. I know that this Center will improve the lives of OSB students in ways - gardening, horticulture therapy, employment training - that would make Christine proud. My family - David, Anna, Ruth and many of Chris’ family and friends - are honored to be able to support this project.”
A total grant of “$201,480” that came from Green Mountain Energy Sun Club, includes “high-efficiency misting and irrigation system; manual solar shades that will balance the temperature in the greenhouse, and reduce the electric, heating and cooling costs; and a 50-kilowatt photovoltaic (PV) system which has been installed on the roof of OSB’s Nevil Field House”.
The vice president as well as the general manager of the “Green Mountain Energy”, Mark Parsons:
“Green Mountain Energy Sun Club is honored to be a part of this project and to support the life-changing work of Overbrook School for the Blind. We seek partners that share our goal of a more sustainable world, both for the environment and the community. Overbrook School for the Blind is one of those special organizations that enhances and educates the lives of the people it serves and makes Philadelphia a better place.”
Reeves also said:
“We are beyond fortunate to call the Sun Club a partner in this project. Many projects strive to include sustainable solutions, but often struggle. Thanks to the Sun Club’s generosity, our students will now benefit from hands-on learning experiences that have been infused with energy efficiency, resource conservation, and environmental stewardship. While we are striving for a Net Zero Energy Building designation, it is difficult to classify these student impacts as anything other than a net gain.”