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Living Locally

Community Orchard program comes to fruit-ition

August 13, 2015

In one year, 114 fruit-bearing trees will remove 8.08 tonnes of CO2 from the air and filter 100 litres of storm water. This is the impact this year’s Community Orchards will have on our environment.

Community Orchards were planted by REAP and Enactus Calgary this past Sunday at two Calgary Homeless Foundation (CHF) apartment buildings, Acadia Community Garden & Art Society, and Grow Calgary.

The fruit harvested from the trees and shrubs at the CHF sites will go towards feeding the formerly homeless tenants in these buildings.

REAP was joined at the CHF buildings by the owners of four of the seven REAP businesses who donated the plants. Gaurav Gupta from Leela Eco Spa and Studio, Mark van Engelen from Nya Sustainability, Matt Mayer from Conscious Brands, Aman and Stephanie Adatia from Eat Naaco (who also provided lunch to the volunteers) were all there, among the CHF residents getting their hands dirty. Neal’s Yard Remedies, Yummi Yogis and Greengate Garden Centres were also contributors to this year’s program.

“We are proud to be involved in the community orchards program. It is one of the optimum ways to give back to the environment and the community in one initiative,” says Gaurav.

Also in attendance were 15 volunteers from Enactus Calgary -- a volunteer-run community of business leaders and university students, finding communities in need and using entrepreneurial action to benefit them.

“[The Community Orchards] aligns with our values because it empowers these individuals to manage their own space and their own food.” says Scott Radford, Faculty Advisor for the U of C chapter of Enactus.

Sue Fortune, Director of Abbeydale Place, says that horticultural programs are very therapeutic for clients.

The driving force for the Community Orchards was a request for assistance from Eat Naaco’s Aman and Stephanie, who in 2012 made a commitment to plant one tree for every 500 meals they served through their mobile food business. Through collaboration with REAP and its partners, the program has evolved to plant fruit-bearing trees and shrubs in under-served communities to simultaneously beautify Calgary neighbourhoods while offsetting businesses’ carbon footprint.

“Thanks to the leadership of [Eat Naaco] who brought us this opportunity, Community Orchards help REAP businesses to reduce their environmental impact by creating lasting assets for Calgary communities in need,” says Stephanie Jackman, Founder of REAP.

“We’re proud to have facilitated the donation of 200 trees for the creation of eight orchards since 2013.”


Click to learn more about Calgary Homeless Foundation, Acadia Community Garden & Art Society, Grow Calgary and Enactus Calgary.
To learn more about the other amazing initiatives this year’s donors have undertaken - Leela Eco Spa and Studio, Nya Sustainability, Conscious Brands, Neal’s Yard Remedies, Yummi Yogis, Eat Naaco, and Greengate Garden Centre’s – visit their profiles on our business directory.

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Did you know?

By switching pension funds from Wall Street to medium and small businesses, Quebec has created 87,000 jobs & retained 82,000 others.

Featured Event

Sustainability for Breakfast - Exploring other systemic sustainability initiatives

Aug. 28, 2015 - Aug. 28, 2015

The City of Calgary’s Devonian Gardens (in The Core shopping centre)
317 7 Avenue SW

This month’s Sustainability for Breakfast topic is slightly different than usual! Normally we invite guest speakers from across Calgary to speak about the ways in which they are collaborating on important sustainability issues. This month, the co-organizers will be speaking about the ways in which we are advancing sustainability in Calgary (beyond this event, of course!). First, Stephanie Jackman, founder & president, from REAP will speak about the Be Local campaign and the ways in which REAP is growing a movement toward local purchasing. By raising awareness for Calgary's triple bottom line businesses, and connecting these businesses with each other, REAP helps to keep more money recirculating locally, supporting environmental conservation and community building initiatives. Local food, sustainable style, Be Local Awards, and Community Orchards are just some of the ways that REAP is creating social impact in Calgary by harnessing the power of business. Next, Stephanie Gangon, manager of the Office of Sustainability at the City of Calgary, will share how her team is working to advance sustainability throughout The City and into the community. She will share some highlights of The City’s sustainability practices as well as what we’ve set our sights on for the future. -Doors open at 7:30 am -Breakfast and networking until 8:00 am -Presentations from 8:00 am to 8:50 am -Q&A and general announcements until 9:00 am Space is limited to 75 attendees – register early to avoid disappointment at Payment is required at the time of your RSVP and is $7 per person. There will be a limited number of spaces at the door for those wishing to pay by Calgary Dollars. **Proudly organized by REAP Business Association and The City of Calgary's Office of Sustainability. Bullfrogpowered with 100% green electricity.**
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Did you know?

Canadian businesses with 10-20 employees are the most profitable.