What We Do | Community Orchards
REAP's Community Orchards improve our environment & community
It began in 2012 when Eat Naaco asked REAP for assistance planting 50 trees in order to cut the carbon emissions of its mobile food business. REAP suggested that Eat Naaco donate fruit bearing trees in lower income areas of the city to simultaneously reduce carbon emissions and food insecurity while beautifying public spaces.
In the spring of 2013, with the help of International Avenue Business Revitalization Zone and Greengate Garden Centres, four community orchards were planted in the greater Forest Lawn area in Calgary. Greengate Garden Centres enthusiastically supplied the plants and then matched 10% of Eat Naaco's donation.
When REAP shared the story with other businesses in the network, more local businesses wanted to help. With limited resources to manage complex site approvals and multiple stakeholders, REAP reached out to Enactus Calgary for help. This University of Calgary chapter of Enactus Worldwide - a community of 60,000 student, academic, and business leaders enabling sustainable progress through entrepreneurial action - agreed to a 3-year partnership to bring the project to its’ full potential.
With the help of Enactus Calgary the orchards grew in number from four to 16 and strategic community partnerships were formed with Calgary Homeless Foundation and Grow Calgary. Interest in the program tripled year over year from 2013-2016.
In an effort to meet growing member interest in the program, while streamlining the engagement and installation process, in 2017 REAP decided to focus exclusively on expanding the Community Orchard at Grow Calgary, which contributes to the fresh food grown for 23 of Calgary's compassionate food agencies. Together REAP and Grow Calgary are harnessing the generosity of local business to make a difference in our community.
We are delighted to recognize these REAP businesses for their support:
- BluPlanet Recycling
- Conscious Brands
- Dolan Wealth Management
- Eat Naaco
- Fiasco Gelato
- GOOD Company
- Greengate Garden Centres
- Leela Eco Spa
- Market 17 Organic Grocery Store
- Neal's Yard Remedies
- Nya Sustainability Consulting
- Social Sesame
- Sunnyside Natural Market
- True Buch Kombucha
- Yummi Yogis
You can support Community Orchards too! When you purchase blueberry rooibos bottled kombucha from True Buch Kombucha at select retailers, 50 cents from each bottle sold will be donated to this program. Click here for the full story.