Giving Back for Random Acts of Kindness Week

At Organic Grocer we’re so pleased to be blessed enough to be giving back often and generously!  During Random Acts of Kindness Week we’re reminded why we do what we do – and we hope we can inspire you to give back kindness wherever and however you can too!

 

When you shop at Organic Grocer you’re doing more than supporting a 25 year old local business owned and operated by Surrey residents – you’re supporting LOCAL & INTERNATIONAL charities that make a real impact.

Every year the owners of Organic Grocer, located in the Newton neighbourhood of Surrey BC, donate generously to several local charities that directly impact their community’s most vulnerable residents.  Without these charities the owners believe that Surrey would be a much poorer and meaner place to live.  We hope that you’ll consider supporting them too during Random Acts of Kindness Week – and all throughout the year!

The owners also support international charities that are inspiring significant change around the world and moving industry forward ethically.  Finally, Garth & Deb also encourage their staff to find forward thinking companies that are making a difference through their products and services so that we can feature them in our store!  We hope that you find this article inspiring and that you will feel even better about shopping with Organic Grocer knowing that your hard earned dollars are doing good all around the world.

 

SOME AMAZING LOCAL COMMUNITY CHARITIES:

 

Surrey Women’s Centre 

The Surrey Women’s Centre protects and empowers women and girls.  It is a crisis centre for women and girls escaping domestic violence, sexual assault and other forms of gender-based violence.  The Surrey Women’s Centre is the only women’s Centre in Surrey, BC. They are often the first and sometimes the only place women and girls in need call for help.

It is only because of generous daily donations that these women and girls have a safe place to turn.

The Centre is open 24 hours per day. 7 days per week. 365 days per year.

 

Surrey Food Bank 

Hunger affects us all; it knows no age, it knows no race and it knows no season. At the Surrey Food Bank they have created specialised programs to ensure they are providing food assistance to everyone who needs a hand up in our community.  

Hungry clients may visit the Surrey Food Bank and receive a nutritious supply of food every 14 days. The Food Bank’s goal is to provide sufficient food for 3 to 4 days, offering vegetarian and non-vegetarian options based on Canada’s Food Guide for Healthy Eating.   However, the Food Bank is limited in what they can offer as they can only supply what has been donated.

 

 SOURCES BC (at Peace Arch Hospital)

In 1978, Peace Arch Community Services (PACS) was formed to serve the Surrey and White Rock community. Only a few thousand people sought its services and referral information; but as family and social challenges intensified, so did the need for PACS volunteers and professionals to help others overcome adversity and build a better life. In 2008 the organization provided direct service to approximately 12,300 individuals. SOURCES was born in 2010 as other agencies consolidated their services with PACS; these included Gateway Autism Society and Gateway Autism Foundation (2010), Newton Advocacy Group Society (2011), South Fraser Women’s Services Society (2012) and Cornerstone Care Society (2015).

SOURCES now strives to create more vibrant and resilient communities by offering support to children, youth, families, persons with disabilities, seniors, and others who are coping with isolation, addiction, poverty, disability and conflict. We also support our communities through leadership, education and volunteerism.

 

Covenant House 

Covenant House provides love and hope to Vancouver’s street youth. Covenant House helps youth aged 16 to 24 who have fled physical, emotional and/or sexual abuse; those who have been forced from their homes; and those who have aged out of foster care.  Covenant House is a premier provider of shelter as well as other services for homeless youth thanks to the hard work and dedication of their staff and volunteers and generous donor’s support.

 

We at the Organic Grocer believe that once a person’s basic needs for food, shelter, and safety are taken care of a beautiful and healthy environment will enrich their lives.

A healthy and vibrant environment doesn’t just create a better place for our animal friends to live, but also creates a healthy and supportive environment for us humans to thrive in as well.  Keeping that in mind, we support several environmental and agrarian charities across the country every year:

 

SOME AMAZING ENVIRONMENTAL CHARITIES: 

 

Burns Bog Conservation Society

The Burns Bog Conservation Society networks with leading scientists to give and distribute accurate and up-to-date information on peatlands. In 1995 Dr David Bellemy discovered that Burns Bog was regenerating after the peat harvesting. He told the Society “you have proved by accident in Burns Bog the theory that the bog will regenerate within 40 years!”

When you give to the Burns Bog Conservation Society, you become part of a powerful movement to save one of our country’s most fragile and precious ecosystems – Burns Bog. Thank you for protecting “the lungs of the Lower Mainland.”

 

Did you know that you can Adopt an Animal for your Valentine?

 

Young Agrarians

Young Agrarians (YA) is a network for new and young ecological and organic farmers. Since they started January 2012, the network has grown across Canada from coast to coast because of farmers who have organized events (mixers, farm tours & potlucks, apprentice meet-ups, etc.)  The network is made up of a diverse array of food growers and lovers: rural and urban farmers, market gardeners, seed savers, food activists, bee keepers, community gardeners, food/farmer organizations and more.  All of who are working to steward land and soil, and grow our local food systems.

Young Agrarians recognises Indigenous title to all lands in Canada. They feel it is their responsibility to care for and respect the land that we all live on and depend upon for water, food and shelter. In a time of climate change, we must all do our part to nurture resilient food systems (local, ecological and equitably produced) choosing with our dollars, values and hands to consume and produce foods that are healthy for us and future generations.

 

Canadian Organic Growers 

COG’s mission is to lead local and national communities towards sustainable organic stewardship of land, food and fibre while respecting nature, upholding social justice and protecting natural resources.

Not all COG members run certified organic operations, but they share a vision for a sustainable bioregionally-based organic food system. COG members believe that organic food production is the best choice for the health of consumers and producers, for the protection and enhancement of the environment, and for the sustainability of the food production system. In fact we believe that the survival of our country and even of the planet depends on it!

 

FarmFolk CityFolk 

FarmFolk CityFolk is a not for profit society that works to cultivate a local, sustainable food system. Their projects provide access to & protection of foodlands; support local growers and producers; and engage communities in the celebration of local food.

“Something happens to people who plant seeds–it is impossible to watch a plant grow and flourish without getting a sense of the miracle of all life.”

-Herb Barbolet, Co-founder of FarmFolk CityFolk

 

Certified Organic Association of BC  

COABC’s approach to food production is based on care for the earth. They recognize that as human beings, we are one creature among many which are all inter-related and interdependent. The COABC is part of an organic movement that embraces a wide diversity of activities and enterprises related to the organic production of food and encompass all sizes of operations.

One of the tools the COABC uses is a regulatory framework to permit exports.  Their priority is the establishment and maintenance of local food systems. They accept the principles of organic farming and processing identified by the International Federation of Organic Agricultural Movements (IFOAM) and engage in research of appropriate techniques to enable us to put them all into practice.

 

We know that donating directly to charities is meaningful and changes lives daily – but sometimes it’s best to support initiatives that are run by companies and organisations which we trust and which we know will direct funds into the most needy hands and environments.

Because we want our dollars to make a meaningful impact we look for products that we can carry brought to us by companies and organisations doing really meaningful work!  Two such companies come to mind (below), but don’t forget that any of the fair trade products we carry make a difference in the lives of people around the world!  That’s why we strive to carry a fair trade option wherever possible.

 

 

Alaffia Body Care Products

Buy an Alafffia product and contribute to their Empowerment initiatives in Africa with every purchase.  Empowerment Projects are Alaffia’s mission in action, funded by the sales of Alaffia products.  Alaffia invests in their communities because they believe it is their moral responsibility to ensure African resources empower African communities. Their goal is to alleviate poverty and encourage gender equality.  Alaffia’s Empowerment Projects include several Education-Based Projects, Maternal Health, FGM Eradication, Eyeglasses and Reforestation. All of Alaffia’s projects empower Togolese communities to provide their skills and knowledge to the rest of the world and to rise out of poverty.

As of 2017 Alfaffia’s Empowerment Initiatives have:
•• DISTRIBUTED 7,482 BIKES ••  •• GIVEN 32,842 CHILDREN SCHOOL SUPPLIES ••  •• BUILT 2,261 SCHOOL BENCHES ••  •• CONSTRUCTED 10 SCHOOLS ••  •• FUNDED 4,463 BIRTHS ••  •• PLANTED 57,575 TREES ••  •• DONATED 24,927 EYEGLASSES ••

Learn more here:  https://alaffia.com/empowerment/

 

Natural Calm Magnesium & Calcium Products

Every purchase of Natural Calm Products supports the Organics 4 Orphans Charity which supports organic gardening, nutritional training, natural medicine and income generation in communities across Africa.

 

Natural Factors and the Plant a Seed and See What Grows Foundation

Every purchase of a Whole Earth & Sea Supplement sends $2 directly to the Plant a Seed and See What Grows Foundation – a local charity that creates a lot of buzz around food and the interconnectedness that unites us all.   We are all interconnected with one another, with our food, with our environment and with our communities. And we are what we eat. And we are stewards of our land. And we are what we contribute to our communities.  At Plant a Seed Foundation, they nurture a sense of interconnectivity with one another, with our food, our land and our communities. They are committed to helping others to:

They further support our local communities by:

We hope that knowing the hard earned dollars you spend at Organic Grocer are making a significant difference every day in both local lives and lives across the globe brings warmth to your heart and a smile to your face. 

Now get out there and make a difference in someone’s life!

What’s New at the OG?

During the month of April many new products become available to us – and you!  We’ve been carefully sifting through the new products and we’re excited to bring some pretty spectacular products to you.  Here’s a sneak peek:

New Roots Herbals – have a look through the vitamin section – we’ve brought literally dozens of new products in by this knowledgeable company.  You’ll find them competitively priced; yet New Roots products are often the highest quality and highest potency on the shelf!  Make sure you have a close look at these guys!  Most of their products are on sale this month.

Sisu Children’s Line – we’ve brought is the hugely popular Sisu U-Cube Gummy MultiVitamins, Gummy Cal/Mag for Kids, & Gummy tart Vitamin C.  Your kids are gonna love them – come in and ask for a sample.

Truly Turmeric – wild crafted whole root turmeric & black pepper paste.  This paste is therapeutic grade turmeric with black pepper to enhance the healing properties of the turmeric.  Blended in coconut oil with a twist of lime – we’re super excited about this one!  (Find it next to the therapeutic coconut oils in the grocery section).

Denman Island Grizzly Bars – a tasty way to support our local rain forests this Easter Season.  (We’ve got the bunnies too!)  Take a picture with the bar for your chance to win a trip to Tofino!  #GrizzlyBar

Better Than Pasta Konjac Noodles & Rice alternatives – High in fibre, low in carbs, these tasty noodle and rice alternatives keep you feeling satisfied while keeping your carb intake down.

Flora Health Teas – we’ve brought in several new medicinal teas by Flora Health.  Make sure you stop by the tea section the next time you’re in the store.

Radico Organic Hair Dye – These all natural chemical free hair dyes are permanent and safe to use for the whole family.  Give them a try and let us know what you think!

Genuine Health’s shelf stable probiotics – Our NEW advanced gut health probiotic contains 15 strains that mimic human gut flora in an allergen- and plastic-free delayed-release capsule to deliver our probiotics straight to your gut!  We keep them in the fridge with the other probiotics.

3 Brains Formulas – for over all body health.  These formulations take a holistic approach to brain health and are getting great feed back!  Look for these great products through out our supplement section.

Nirvana Pies – Pot pies made with clean, scrumptious ingredients by a local family in Richmond.  Foods that comfort the soul and brighten the spirit!

There’s so much more that hasn’t yet arrived – but will be here before the end of the month!  Make sure to take some extra time this month to look at all the new stuff!

 

 

 

We Carry Zaklan Heritage Farm Produce & It’s SO Exciting!

ZAKLAN HERITAGE FARM:  GROWING DELICIOUS VEGETABLES USING ECOLOGICALLY FRIENDLY PRACTICES Red leaf lettuce& KEEPING A BIT OF SURREY’S HISTORY ALIVE…

Did you know we have an amazing and robust organic farm right in our back yard?  Zaklan Heritage Farm has been in Surrey on 138th and 84th since 1928!  They produce the most amazing organic produce – and we are so happy to have their locally grown products in our store!

So far this year Zaklan Heritage Farm has provided us with stunning lettuces, salad mix, kales, radishes, and snap peas and we are looking forward to cukes and zukes and red Russian garlic any day now.  We can’t wait to hear what the fall harvest will have in store for us!

Check out the Zackan’s story: 

Motivated by a passion for the environment and creating positive change, we found ourselves farming at the UBC Farm in Vancouver in 2011. Gemma, a graduate of the Global Resource Systems program at UBC, was in her 4th season at the UBC Farm when she met Doug, a student in the Practicum program. At that time Doug was already beginning to sow the first seeds of Zaklan Heritage Farm, and Gemma was getting ready to take off for a year managing a farm in Peru.

20160630_1552522012 was spent apart, each learning and exploring new farming practices to complement those we’d learned at UBC Farm. When we re-united in 2013 we began to expand and grow the idea of what Zaklan Heritage Farm could be. Now in the second year together at the farm we are growing on twice as much space as the previous year and continue to increase the number of neighbours, families and community members fed from our farm.

Started in the 1920’s by Dragan and Marta Zaklan, the Zaklan Family has been farming this land for over 80 years. In 2011 the now urban farm underwent a revitalization led by Doug, the next generation of Zaklans. With Doug’s vision, and ample support from the family, the farm has been transformed into a diverse mixed vegetable and livestock operation.

Our 8 acres grows a diversity of vegetable and fruit crops, as well as provides space to pasture livestock, including our 95 laying hens. The birds are rotated around the farm throughout the season, providing them access to fresh green grass and grubs all year long. Growing food using an intensive production system, with small machinery and hand tools, we are able to minimize our fossil fuel consumption and better manage our soils in an ecologically sound way.

Utilizing an intensive cropping style, the vegetables and fruits produced on the farm are grown without the use of synthetic chemicals. Fueled by organic compost and sustainable soil management practices, the produce emerges vibrant and fresh from the fields.

Throughout the season we grow over 40 different types of vegetables, providing a diversity of tastes, textures and colours to awaken the taste buds to what real food tastes like. We tend to our animals and vegetables with respect and care, producing a product we are proud to share, and love to eat ourselves!

A little piece of Canadian (and Surrey’s) history – learn about how the Zackland Farm came to be all the way back in 1920 here.

Did you know you can collaborate with the Zackllands for a better world?
Check out their volunteer and special projects page here.

“Odd as I am sure it will appear to some, I can think of no better form of personal involvement in the cure of the environment than that of gardening. A person who is growing a garden, if he is growing it organically, is improving a piece of the world. ”
― Wendell Berry, The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays

Contact

Email gemma@zaklanheritagefarm.com
Phone 604.355.1061
Address 13278 84th avenue,
Surrey, B.C.
Facebook facebook.com/zalkanheritagefarm
Twitter twitter.com/zaklanfarm
Instagram instagram.com/zaklanheritagefarm
Farm Tour Google “Feet” View

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