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Life Project

The Life Project is a joint initiative between Council and the Public Health Agency, focused on improving Air Quality in the region.

The project will provide tree saplings for every life event registered in the Derry and Strabane area - Birth, Death, Marriage and Civil Partnership, to help reduce the effects of air pollution on Health and Well-being.  Recipients are encouraged to plant the tree at their own property but if they do not have a suitable location, Council will identify alternative sites.

Air pollution is an important determinant of health; it represents the biggest environmental risk to health. In 2012, one out of every nine deaths was the result of air pollution-related conditions making it the largest environmental risk factor for ill health.  Of those deaths, around 3 million are attributable solely to ambient (outdoor) air pollution.

Air pollution affects all regions, settings, socioeconomic groups, and age groups. While all people living in a given area breathe from the same air, there are nevertheless important geographical differences in exposure to air pollution.


Why plant trees:

 🌳 Decrease Air Pollution in the area

 🌳 Decrease respiratory illnesses / conditions

 🌳 Decrease heart conditions

 🌳 Increase awareness of health related conditions

 🌳 Increase physical activity

 🌳 Improve Health and Well-being of population in the Derry and Strabane areas

 🌳 Improve mental health

 🌳 Improve landscape

 🌳 Increase property value

 ​🌳 Increase tourism



Planting Trees:

 🌱 Decreases Carbon Dioxide

 🌱 Increases Oxygen

 🌱 Eliminates Toxins

 🌱 Provides nourishment for the food chain and the earth

 🌱 Is a safe and effective solution to some of the biggest environmental problems



 ​🏡  If a recipient does not have a suitable location within their own property, Council will identify alternative sites.


Your Trees

 🌱 The Tree Saplings are all Cell grown plants which have been grown in small containers (cells) containing Compost allowing them to be planted almost all year round.

 🌱 Year round Planting

 🌱 Root systems are contained and protected by compost to prevent damage when planting. The root system is easily planted due to the shape of the cell enabling inexperienced planters to plant successfully.

 🌱 Cells can be easily stored outside prior to planting, and do not require labour intensive heeling in or expensive cold-storage.


 Planting your Cell Grown Plant

 💧 Ensure all plants are fully wet before planting

 🌱 Do not leave unprotected plants exposed to wind and sun while awaiting planting

 🌱 Prepare suitably loosened hole of adequate size to accommodate the root plug

 🌱 Avoid compaction and smearing in heavy soils

 ​🥾 Insert plant and firm down around it with your heel, ensure plant remains upright

 🌱 After firming, make sure root plug is covered by at least 3cms of soil otherwise it will dry out and become loose.


Health Benefits 

The project has the potential to significantly increase the number of new trees planted in the City and District and leave a lasting memory for families from key life events as well as providing the associated health benefits.

Health literature appropriate to the occasion and in line with the Public Health Agency's key campaigns are distributed with each sapling, ie: bereavement and mental health information for those registering a death, breastfeeding for births and healthy relationships and sexual health messages for marriages. This project also matches with the Public Health Agency's Take 5 steps to Wellbeing Initiativewhere the public are encouraged to connect with each other, be active, take notice of the beauty around us, and keep learning and to do something that helps other people.

Take 5 Leaflet

Steps for Stress

Help is at Hand

Organ Donation

Directory of Services  - to improve mental health and emotional wellbeing



Life Project

Environmental Health

Derry City and Strabane District Council

T: 028 71253253

E: [email protected]


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