2018 was an impressive year of planting and learning for us! As we head into 2019, we’re taking this moment to pause and reflect on 2018 and some of the accomplishments and positive impact we collectively achieved together thanks to your support.
Our relationships with our sponsors continued to grow, just as the trees we planted across the country. 2018 brought a record number of Partners in Planting projects with over 115 projects planting more than 15,000 trees across Canada, involving more volunteers than ever before.
TELUS’ Trees for Paper program, a program born from their vision of minimizing the environmental impact of their paper use, successfully planted over 48,000 trees in Manitoba on land owned and managed by the MWF Habitat Foundation through our National Greening Program, which works with municipalities, First Nation communities, conservation organizations and small woodlot owners to restore forest cover across Canada. Through their Trees for Paper program, TELUS has committed to planting enough trees in Canada each year which, through their growth over time, will compensate the biomass used for the production of TELUS’ annual paper use!
Some of our sponsors also saw the spotlight last year. CN, one of our largest sponsors, was recognized on a national level for their environmental contributions. Thanks to their tree planting support through programs such as CN EcoConnexions – From the Ground Up program, #OperationReLeaf and the Montreal Urban Canopy program, CN received the Nature Inspiration Award in the large business category from the Museum of Nature in Ottawa. Congratulations CN!
We continued to assist those communities affected by natural disasters, including those affected by the wildfires in Fort McMurray and British Columbia. In our own backyard, we also launched a new #OperationReLeaf program for the communities impacted by the Ottawa-Gatineau Tornadoes.
On September 26th, we celebrated National Tree Day with tree planting activities in five major cities across Canada: Coquitlam, BC, Winnipeg, MB, Markham, ON Montreal, QC, and St. John’s, NL. Groups of tree-loving volunteers came to spend the day collectively planting and caring for over 1,600 trees.
We also recognized the Government of Canada as the winner of the Eterne award, our highest honour and presented to those organizations that exemplify the best in environmental stewardship. During our special National Tree Day ceremony in Ottawa, the Clerk of the Privy Council, the Honorable Michael Wernick, accepted the award on behalf of all Canadians.
Learning and education were also a top priority for 2018. Bringing together three major networking events in arboriculture and urban forestry: Tree Canada’s CUFC, the Pacific Northwest ISA Annual Training Conference and UBC’s Urban Tree Diversity Conference, the International Urban Forestry Congress (IUFC) in Vancouver welcomed over 700 professionals in the sector.
Just in time for the holidays, we launched our Tuques for Trees campaign and are thankful for the record amount of donations received to plant trees and stay warm at the same time!
Going into 2019, the Tree Canada team is proud to be part of such an important cause and every day we are grateful to contribute to improving the lives of Canadians by growing better places to live. We continue to thank you, our loyal supporters, for your continued devotion to our work. We couldn’t do it without you and well, as they say, it takes a village to raise a child, but it also takes many trees to make a forest! So, to conclude, we thank you for continuing to grow our communities and forests across Canada and we look forward to working with you in 2019. To the trees!