THE REASON BEHIND THE ECO-GRANT
By now you are familiar with the bags that we offer in our store. Over 10 years ago, we made the decision to not purchase plastic or paper shopping bags. The decision was not about saving a dime, it was about saving the environment-our home and playground. We realized that we still needed to offer customers something to place their purchases in, and at the time we were “fighting” with many of our suppliers to reduce the amount of packaging that their product came delivered in. Did you know that EVERY piece of clothing (with the exception of Fig, Message Factory and and Prana) comes individually sealed into it’s own plastic bag? We’re told that this is done to protect the item during shipping and allows a bar code to be attached to an item for so it can be processed in a warehouse. Which we suppose is fair, you appreciate purchasing clean, protected garments, right? It was a battle we were not going to win. That’s when we came up with the clever idea of re-using these bags, and that is what we send you home with!
We then decided that the money we were not spending on shopping bags should go back to the environment, seems how it is the health of our environment that prompted the decision to go bag-less. And in 2006, our annual Eco-Grant was born. Every year, we invite groups or individuals to apply for our grant to help fund their environmental initiative. Together, we have planted trees, built environmentally friendly school playgrounds, planted community gardens, built trails and helped kids get outside.
We are always accepting applications for our Eco-Grant. It’s simple really. Do you have a project on hold because finances are holding you back? Do you have a great idea, and need some financial support to get it started? Perhaps you know of an organization that could use our help. Fill out our application, and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org (Trailhead owner and founder of our Eco-Grant). Successful recipients will be publicly announced throughout the year offering extra attention to your project!.
- Lake Ontario Water Keepers ($500) This organization has been instrumental in calling out organizations that are polluting our Great lake. They are moving beyond lake Ontario and creating Swim- Drink -fish, a program to register as many recreational water users to register their favorite lake.
- Regiopolis Notre Dame School “Green Team” ($500) The team is installing 2 tower gardens inside the school to grow food and help promote just where our food comes from. Food will be used by both food and health classes
- Friends of the Kingston Inner Harbour , ($750) The Turtle protection and education group wants to further educate the public with turtle ID booklets and offer paddling tours (with yours truly!) to identify the different species. They have been instrumental in protecting nest during the breeding season.
- Rideau Public School ($300) For the creation of an in school composting program
- Loving Spoonful ($500) To help with the grow a row program.
- Sydenham Lake and Trail Festival ($500) This is the community’s first such event and we wanted to help make it happen to encourage everyone to come out and enjoy the outdoors.
- Whatif Outreach…..Queens University conference to empower young professionals to tackle our future water-related challenges globally! $500.00
- Kingston Film Festival…to Sponsor an environmental film “All the Time in the World” $750.00
Holy Cross Secondary School for the construction of a bike rack to encourage students to bike to school.
Gananoque Wildlife Preserve for the continued reconstruction and maintenance of the trails.
Loving Spooonful for their grow a row program which successfully produced over 30,ooo lbs of food this year.
Mountain Bike Kingston for their creation of trails for all to access, this year we are supporting their purchase of a grooming machine to create ski trails.
The Annual Perth Road Olympics and their one day event to promote winter sports and activities to kids and adults.
Harwood Outdoor Education Conference; presenting research on outdoor education: $500
- Kingston Community Foundation: $1000
- Harrowsmith Public School to enhance their natural play ground: $1500
- Gananoque Wildlife Area Preserve to re-establish the trails at Deer Ridge road and Hwy 401 east of Kingston: $1480
- Donated to the Thousand Islands Paddling Trail for installation of docks and directional signage: $1000
- Funds towards the composters at MacLean Park and MacLean Trail Community Gardens. Pittsburg community garden association: $50
- Sustainable Kingston was able to purchase a digital projector: $600
- Sponsoring of bus costs to get a bunch of kids out to the Gould Lake Outdoor Centre who would not have a chance otherwise: $500
- The Ryan Centre on Wolf Island, Dedicated to educating kids on the environment around us: $1000
- The Loving Spoonful: $500
- Kingston’s own Greg Adams: who climbed continuously to the altitude of Everest at the Boiler Room to raise money for charity: $260
- Community Harvest Kingston:
$1000 This organization is dedicated to promoting healthy eating, eating local . The money was put towards the purchase of a rototiller, garden tools and seeds.
- Loving Spoonful:
$1000 while not an environmental cause, we felt that due to the lack of submissions we would donate to this very worthy organization.
- Off The Matt Kingston: $1500 initiative to Plant trees in Market Square.
- Transition Kingston: $750 a group very involved in making Kingston a greener city.
- Heather McNie:$1500 start up money to produce lids ( aka The KITEE) for your curbside recycle boxes to keep stuff from blowing away.
( update April 2013…Heather has worked with the City of Kingston and placed 50 in a pilot project for the month of April. )
- Kingston Collegiate and Vocational Institute (KCVI):
$1000 to help build and place snake houses for the black rat snake to help revitalize a declining population
- Kingston Sustainability Centre: $2000 towards teaching and mentoring
- Market Square Tree Project: $1000 towards adding some life to market square.
- Transition Kingston:$750 towards initatives that help Kingston with the challenges of climate change and oil dependence.
- Rideau Public School;$1000 towards their Grow Project
- Mulberry School; $2000 also for a garden project on the school grounds