We moved here in 1981 to raise our children in a Caring Community and rural environment without designer labels and trendy fads.
Folks recycled here naturally as there was garbage pickup but you had to pay for this. It was a great service run by John Spalding who was such a sweet soul that you wanted to have him come to your house with his dog, George, at least once a month. Sometimes even one bag a month was hard to build when you got into the habit of composting, and separating your plastics and tins.
Before John Spalding's time, folks didn't buy much package goods as they mostly grew their own food and enjoyed the odd venison stew. Any waste was burnt or buried, and because there were not that many people then, it didn't impact the environment too negatively. I think fondly of John Henshaw, a long time farmer, saying he remembered the first time he could get broccoli here from California, in about 1960? While he was impressed, he was worried about how that might change things here. That broccoli along with other packaged goods began to come more frequently, and this packaging wasn't so easy to bury and burn. Hence Spalding Sanitary Service! I remember feeling sometimes a little guilty when we sent more to recycling than to John, because we all wanted to support him too. It soon became apparent with more folks moving here, and more food coming in crates than from the ground, that both services were much needed and supported. Recycling was just a way of life here! I felt guiltiest if I didn't separate my plastics perfectly, and often Pender folks were scolded. I said one day at Recycling when I was scolded, after apologizing, how I thought that our Pender Folks were generally pretty good at Recycling, and was told that we were terrible consumers of plastic and this was the hardest to get rid of! Wow, and I thought we were all OK. I did suggest that a kinder way to help us understand this, may go farther with many than a scolding, but what do I know! This Society is a tremendous Volunteer based organization with such dedicated individuals that are Passionate about their Penders and our Environment. Visit them when you come to visit Pender or at www.penderislandrecycling.com
The Community also recycled household goods and clothing at the Nu to U, another Amazing Organization, with about 70 Volunteers, that provided a space for these goods to be someone else's treasure. The money raised here went back into the Community to support and fund other areas of the Community in need - Medical Supplies, Baseball Bats for Youth Sports, Playground Equipment for the Playschool, Scouting and Guiding Events, and still going strong today! Last night I heard again how much they have Supported Pender Fire Service over the many years that that Volunteer Service Has been in existence.
Visit the Nu To U while on island next to the Library.
Pender Island Fire Service is already Going Green! Their new Training Facility will Recycle all the water they will use. This is another Fantastic Organization with approximately 100 Volunteers that are Checking our Firetrucks and Supplies or Answering a Pager Call to keep us safe when in need.
Absolutely Amazing! Visit the Firehall in person or at www.penderfire.org
Our Pender Island Elementary School is also a place where our children learn naturally to be Greener. The School naturally "Walks the Talk" and has a Cob House and Garden area to help the children learn these wonderful skills. Drop by the school to check these out or visit them at www.sd64.bc.ca/penderisland-school
I have started this post for our Chamber's Green Page, but this is such a small portion of the many ways in which our Community is already so Naturally Green, that we encourage you to write in about your organization so we can further connect us all. In this way, we can all learn from each other, and discover more ways in which we can be Greener. Happy Growing