Camille Village Gets New Trees

Debra Payne is visiting family in Camille Village.

That's nothing new, but there is a new addition in her sister's yard.

"I think they are beautiful. It feels like home. I'm always visiting back here and it looks real nice," Payne said.

She's talking about the trees. Dozens of trees and crepe myrtle were planted throughout the neighborhood as part of a public housing beautification project.

"I've heard a lot. A lot of people say they like them, and that they're glad they're out here and everything and I think it makes the neighborhood look a lot better," said resident council president Kellie Bender.

You may recall the Region Eight housing authority came under fire over the summer for its controversial "no planting" policy - one that eliminated potted plants and gardens.

The resident who filed a lawsuit against the policy is pleased to see the "added touches".

"Over the last couple of years they systematically stripped this area to make them warehouses for people instead of a living community and even though we figuratively and literally, live on the other side of the tracks , we have a sense of community and a sense of pride and I think that this new policy or this change in policy to put the trees and the flowers back in is going to restore people's hope," Mark Fosselmann said.

Hope in the power of a united community.

Camille Village is the first public housing community to receive the landscape improvements.

Residents are also having a Christmas lighting project, where you can donate Christmas lights to those who can't afford them.

If you would like to donate, call Kellie Bender at 452-2656 for more information.