“I was born here—in the trees.” she said, laughing. It was a joke, of course. But for Kayla Imhoff, TreePeople’s Marketing and Communications Intern, it’s not too far from the truth.
TreePeople has played a big role in Kayla’s life, starting in early childhood. Her mother, Chris Imhoff, joined the organization as an intern in the early 1980’s, and has remained part of the TreePeople family ever since. She now serves as Senior Director of Programs. Kayla was homeschooled, which meant summer days exploring nature here in Coldwater Canyon Park and doing homework under the trees.
While her mother ran the fruit tree distribution program, Kayla remembers lending a helping hand at events. Even as a 5-year-old, she played a part in growing a green Los Angeles. In fact, it was her connection with our fruit tree program that led her to organize a distribution herself as her capstone project with the Girl Scouts in high school. She even went on to write a thesis about the development of our distribution program in her senior year of college.
“This is such a special place,” she reflected, while we sat at the picnic tables in Yurt Village.
Having worked with other nonprofits during her college experience, she’s come to appreciate TreePeople’s unique approach of uniting grassroots outreach and policy work to create change for Los Angeles. “It’s made me who I am today,” she said.
Her experience in nature has given her a different perspective on how nature and people are connected, and she feels lucky to have had it be a foundation during her upbringing.
“Everything is connected. I think the better grasp people have on that, the more conscious they will be in their every day decisions,” she said. “You don’t have to be a vegan, hippie, compost-everything type of person to take part. We can all integrate small changes into our normal day to day.”
We’re so thankful for Kayla’s role here, and know she’ll go on to do amazing things for LA!
Want to get involved? Visit our website to find opportunities to volunteer your time!