2019 Community Micro-Grant Recipients

2019 Community Sustainability Micro-Grant Recipients Announced
Posted on 05/13/2019
There are ten newly funded community sustainability projects on the go in the Capital region, thanks to the City of Charlottetown’s Micro-Grants Program.

The community-based projects were selected to receive funding based on their ability to work towards the goals and actions of the City’s Integrated Community Sustainability Plan (ICSP), and their ability to engage the community in sustainability. The micro-grant awards range between $500 and $2,500.

Each of the 2019 micro-grant projects relate to one or more of the four pillars of sustainability: environmental, economic, cultural and social. Projects include everything from a Community Move & Groove dance sessions in City parks to school garden and tree planting initiatives, a Veg on the Block food festival and a project monitoring the ecological health of Charlottetown ponds, among others.

The 2019 micro-grant recipients are:
• Groove PEI – Community Move & Groove
• West Kent Elementary School – Sustainable Gardening and Eating Local
• PEI Lung Association – Radon Detector Library Loan Pilot Program
• VegPEI – Veg on the Block
• Charlottetown Rural High School – Charlottetown Rural Tree Nursery and Orchard
• Nine Yards Studio – People’s Ping-Pong Project
• Fusion & PEI Food Exchange – Disco Soup Event
• Ellen’s Creek Watershed Group – A Rain Garden in Every Yard
• Winter Love PEI – Winter Love PEI 2020 and beyond!
• Holland College – Ecological Pong Health of Charlottetown Ponds 2019

For more information on this year’s micro-grant projects, visit: www.charlottetown.ca/microgrants

To view the Integrated Community Sustainability Plan, visit: https://www.charlottetown.ca/environment___sustainability/sustainability/sustainability_resources


Media contact:

Alicia Packwood
Social Media and Communications Assistant
City of Charlottetown

2019 Micro-Grant Project Descriptions:

1) Project Title: Disco Soup Charlottetown

Disco Soup Charlottetown brings together community members to gather and prepare ingredients that would otherwise become food waste, to turn them into a communal meal to be shared by all. This event occurs worldwide and is connected to the Slow Food movement. The event will reduce the environmental impact of food waste from local agricultural producers, retailers, and restaurants, while simultaneously increasing the knowledge and capacity of participants. Volunteers will source local ingredients over the course of a week through gleaning and donations, and then bringing individuals together to learn about making use of food waste and preparing a meal to be shared. Further, this event will have a weighing/taking to measure the amount of food that is being diverted, individuals will receive educational materials and virtual recipes.

2) Project Title: Community Move and Groove

Community Move and Groove is an all-inclusive dance party in the park. Using the The World Groove and Move (TWGM) Groove practices, participants are taken through an organized session of simple dance steps, brief yoga/stretch, and one stillness and breath song. By bringing people together in a positive safe space, the applicant hopes the act of dancing can build and strengthen communities and improve overall health, wellbeing and positivity of residents. The applicant would like to host 40 free sessions during the summer from June-September, with each session lasting from 40-60 minutes and be held in various parks in Charlottetown. The sessions would be taught by Rhonda Gallant, who is currently the only Groove licenced facilitator in the Maritimes. She hosts over fifteen years of experience teaching these programs, keeps liability insurance to operate on public premises, as well as her first aid and CPR.

3) Project Title: Peoples Ping Pong Project

The applicant would like to build a pilot project for two permanent outdoor ping pong tables that also serve as works of art. The project meets goals of the ICSP by creating the tables with local artists to make them unique, as well as promoting healthy and active living. This plan has four stages, planning, prototyping, building, then launch and media. The tables would be built out of as many recyclable materials as possible, and low cost building materials. Project planning will commence in June, with the final stage of this project occurring at the end of June. The applicant hopes to create engagement and activity in public spaces, as well as change peoples’ perceptions, to show them a new way forward that is positive, more ecological and sustainable.

4) Project Title: Radon Detector Library Loan Pilot Program

The PEI Lung Association Radon Detector Library Loan-out Program is designed to increase public awareness on the existence of radon in Charlottetown homes, as well as to provide a free tool for testing and mitigating radon in resident’s home. With the Confederation Centre Public library, the applicant will provide digital radon gas detectors that could be checked out by individuals along with a package of information to test radon levels in their own homes and how to mitigate these levels if they prove to be too high. Health Canada recently estimated that radon induces 16% of lung cancer deaths, and a study has determined that approximately 7% of Canadian homes have elevated radon levels. The planning phase of the project will start in July 2019, with test kits in the library by September. The group will then host a launch event in November 2019 as well as a media campaign for Radon Awareness month.

5) Project Title: A Rain Garden in Every Yard

Ellen’s Creek Watershed Group will create a display to promote the effectiveness of rain gardens in controlling water in modern cities. After the success of creating the rain garden at Spring Park Elementary, the group would like to create a display to promote rain gardens at public events and on a one-on-one basis. The display will be created in early May 2019, making its first appearance at the Confederation Centre Library’s Green Day.

6) Project Title: Charlottetown Rural Tree Nursery and Orchard

Charlottetown Rural has maintained a native tree nursery on land adjacent to the school for the past 20 years that currently has 200 tree seedlings destined for trails along Ellen’s Creek and Heritage Creek, helping to teach students about and to maintain biodiversity in the region. The nursery is currently in need of an update to the beds, and requires new/additional soil, mulch, and compost. The applicant will add an additional 4 beds to start growing fruit trees. The native and fruit tree plantings will create a sustainable tree community for Charlottetown, will create a local opportunity to grow and harvest fruit in the Charlottetown Community, as well as demonstrates the possibilities for what local residents could plant in their own yards. Further, students gain unique experience through studying the theory of forestry, biodiversity, and sustainability with a hands-on approach. The applicant is inviting Geoff Boyle to provide expertise in planting and transplanting the trees.

7) Project Title: Sustainable Gardening and Eating Local

Primary students at West Kent Elementary School have been maintaining two small garden boxes at the school for the past three years. With the school having grown in size, the applicant would like to add two more boxes to engage more students, as well as add components to their existing garden. By investing in supplies and tools such as a rain barrel, a large composter, and a gardening storage space, they will be able to give more students a richer experience learning about sustainability, agriculture, and gardening. At the completion of this project the school would like to hire a dietician to come into the school and teach students about simple recipes and preparation methods using the produce they grew over the summer. This project will also help the school reduce waste through composting.

8) Project Title: Veg on the Block

Veg on the Block is a vegan block party led by youth and driven by volunteerism. Its aim will be to celebrate Prince Edward Island’s local plant-based businesses and educate the public on the benefits of a plant-based diet and healthy, active lifestyle. The organization’s goal is that Veg on the Block will draw attention to the culture of inclusivity and solidarity found among Charlottetown’s economic landscape. It will include a day full of delicious food, activities, music and fun. Admission to the festival will be free and open to all, and will have local plant-based entrepreneurs, restaurants, farmers, artisans and musicians all showcasing what they have to offer and to gain exposure to their target demographics.

9) Project Title: WinterLove PEI: 2020 and beyond!

Winter Love offers and promotes free events where people can come together, be active, and have fun throughout the cold winter months. These range from disco skate to snoga (snow yoga) in the park to soup & curling and tubing parties. Winter Love is organized by volunteers, and has seen growth in both the number of events and participant’s year by year. Winter Love addresses certain areas of the ICSP through providing free/low cost active programming, encouraging programing in city greenspaces, and to promote Charlottetown as a winter destination. Planning for the 2019/20 Winter Love season will commence in the fall. Due to the success of the program over the past three years, the applicant would like to hire a part-time coordinator to manage volunteers, communications, marketing, partner relationships, and event planning and execution.

10) Project Title: Ecological Health of Charlottetown Ponds 2019

For two years, the Environmental Applied Science Technology (EAST) students from Holland College have collected baseline data to determine the overall ecological health of water systems in Charlottetown, creating valuable information that has helped to shed light on some of the underlying issues directly responsible for the poor ecological health of some ponds. This project will continue to build upon that original work by continuing to monitor the water systems of interest, start to develop a restoration plan for some key ponds in Charlottetown by analyzing the data collected to date, and organizing community events such as a guided walk in Ellen’s Creek watershed and sample collection demonstration. Although the 2019 project builds off of previous years, it is unique because each season of the projects creates new information to share. The aim of this project is to contribute to Charlottetown becoming a more resilient and sustainable city through the identification of problem watersheds and in turn the implementation of a restoration plan. This project supports sustainability by engaging people in outdoor spaces, and environmental themes. Holland College will hire 2 or 3 students (pending other external funding) entering their second year of study in the fall to be responsible for collecting and analyzing all data, providing guidance and support for the community engagement piece and for completing a final report that will be shared with the city of Charlottetown.