The City of Vancouver and Vancouver Foundation today announced the 17 recipients of the 2012 Community Grants from the Greenest City Fund, who will receive a total of $391,500 in funding.
Co-funded by the City and the Foundation, the Community Grants are part of the Greenest City Fund — a four-year, $2 million fund that supports community-led green projects in Vancouver.
“We invited local organizations to come up with their best ideas on how to help make Vancouver the greenest city in the world by 2020,” said Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson. “These grants are designed to support community-based organizations that are working towards Greenest City goals.
“And today, at Vancouver Technical Secondary School, along with Fresh Roots Urban Farm Society, we are kicking off one of 17 such projects around the city. With a grant of $35,000, students at ‘Van Tech’ and David Thompson Secondary will develop schoolyard market gardens that will serve as outdoor classrooms for students and teachers, and provide produce to go into school cafeterias to provide healthy, nutritious lunches for fellow students.
“It’s a great example of the creative social enterprises and green jobs we want to see thrive and grow in Vancouver, and we’re proud to be supporting a diverse range of groups with the 2012 grants.”
“I’d like to congratulate Fresh Roots and all the students, teachers and officials at School District 39 for supporting this innovative project. I’d also like to recognize the Real Estate Foundation British Columbia and Vancity, whose financial support demonstrates the true community collaboration on this project,” said Vancouver Foundation President and CEO Faye Wightman. “In fact, I’d like to thank every one of the 61 organizations that applied for a Community Grant. Though we couldn’t fund every project, we commend every one for their enthusiasm, their creativity, and their hard work in helping to keep Vancouver green.”
Sixty-one applications for grants (totaling almost $2.7 million) were reviewed by Vancouver Foundation staff and a volunteer committee of experts in environmental and urban sustainability. The committee chose to support 17 projects. These will have immediate benefits in the short-term — by helping to restore Stanley Park, providing bikes and training to low-income residents, and creating a mobile produce market for seniors, for example. However, each project, chosen or not, helps Vancouver and its residents continue to strive for the longer-term goal of becoming the world’s greenest city.
Totaling $391,500 here are the 17 community grant projects that were chosen for 2012 (in alphabetical order):
16th and Pine Community Garden Expansion ($5,000)
This grant to Kitsilano Christian Community will expand the 16th and Pine St. Community Gardens to include an additional nine plots and an herb garden. It will connect children and the community with their food source and each other.
This grant to Vancouver Area Cycling Coalition will be used to create a program to deliver bicycle skills courses and bikes to low-income individuals who have an interest in using a bicycle as a regular form of transportation but who have barriers to doing so.
EMBERS Energy-Efficiency Retrofits for Businesses – Pilot Project ($35,000)
This grant to Eastside Movement for Business and Economic Renewal Society will help make small- and medium-sized Vancouver businesses more energy efficient and create green jobs by hiring individuals with barriers to employment.
Fresh Roots Schoolyard Market Gardens ($35,000)
This grant to Fresh Roots Urban Farm Society with School District No. 39 (Vancouver) will help develop schoolyard market gardens at Vancouver Technical and David Thompson Secondaries. The project connects organic growing practices with environmental education and will also be used for food sales with two market gardens that function as classrooms.
Green Bloc ($35,000)
This grant to Evergreen will help residents of the Green Bloc reduce their ecological footprint and develop a toolkit for neighbourhoods across Vancouver to use in their own greening projects.
The Green Hub ($20,000)
This grant to Strathcona Business Improvement Association, with Judith Marcuse Projects Society, will help develop a Green Hub, which will help businesses in the False Creek Flats and surrounding areas, be more sustainable through the implementation of zero waste, green building and local food strategies.
Growing Vancouver’s Largest Urban Forest ($15,000)
This grant to Stanley Park Ecology Society will be used for restoring compromised areas of Stanley Park through planting native species while working with local environmental artists to re-purpose invasive plant materials.
More than Just Trash Talk – From Dialogue to Action ($35,000)
This grant to Mount Pleasant Neighbourhood House, with the Association of Neighbourhood Houses, will be used to engage residents of multi-unit residential buildings in Vancouver to create recycling programs for food scraps and other materials.
Nature in your Neighbourhood ($9,000)
This grant to Young Naturalists' Club of BC Society will help connect Vancouver families to nearby nature through volunteer-led clubs, community mentors, family programs and resources.
Public Bike Share Maintenance and Repair Program ($35,000)
This grant to Pedal Energy Development Alternatives Power Association will create a maintenance and repair program for the Public Bike Share system (conditional upon Bike Share Program being finalized).
Sea to Fork: Building Sustainable Seafood Connections for Vancouver ($22,000)
The intent of this grant to Living Oceans Society, with T Buck Suzuki Environmental Foundation, is to promote low-impact purchasing and seafood choices; increase access to local sustainable seafood for Vancouver; and increase the variety of local, quality seafood for the city.
Tree Keepers ($25,000)
This grant to Tree City Canada Association, with Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation, will support residents and businesses to plant trees on their own property by offering training in tree care, leadership and community organizing.
Treehouse Treats ($1,500)
This grant to Vancouver Fruit Tree Project Society will help with the operations of Treehouse Treats — a youth-led social enterprise that turns excess fruit into baked goods to sell at community events.
Urban Orchard ($50,000)
This grant to Sole Food Farm, with Cultivate Canada Society, will help to develop an urban orchard to increase the amount and diversity of local food in the community. It will also reduce food miles, increase the urban tree canopy, and diversify native pollinator food sources. Residents from the Downtown Eastside will be employed and provided with hands-on skills training.
The Westside Mobile Produce Market ($12,000)
This grant to Westside Food Collaborative, with South Granville Seniors Friendship Centres, is for a feasibility study and pilot to create a mobile produce market. The market would increase access to local, healthy, and affordable fruits and vegetables for vulnerable populations on Vancouver's Westside.
Windermere Secondary Community Garden Expansion ($5,000)
This grant to Windermere Organic Garden Committee, with School District No. 39 (Vancouver), will add garden beds to increase food production for the school cafeteria and Community Schools Program. The area will also be converted to a community gathering space with benches and pathways.
Youth-Lead Green Project for the Chinese Community ($25,000)
This grant to S.U.C.C.E.S.S. is to be used towards a youth-led project to help green the organization and local businesses.
The next grant cycle for Greenest City Fund’s Community Grants will take place in the fall of 2013. A call for submissions will be announced in early summer. For more information on Greenest City Community Grants, go to the Vancouver Foundation website at https://vancouverfoundation.ca/greenestcityfund/communitygrants/
The Greenest City Fund is a four-year, $2 million fund that supports community-led green projects in Vancouver. Funded by the City of Vancouver and Vancouver Foundation, the Greenest City Fund comprises three granting programs: Generation Green Grants, which fund youth-led projects; Neighbourhood Small Grants, which fund projects created by Vancouver residents that benefit their neighbourhood; and Community Grants, which fund Vancouver projects led by community-based charitable organizations. The goal of the Greenest City Fund is to help make Vancouver the greenest city in the world by 2020. Find out more at: www.vancouverfoundation.ca/greenestcityfund