Alec Stewart, president of Velocitek notes; “Velocitek is a company made up of people who love the ocean. Being based in Hawaii, we are surrounded by the ocean and we spend a lot of time playing in and on the water. We also realize that clean oceans are essential to our livelihood, and the success of the recreational marine industry as a whole. We believe that individually we have a small impact in preserving our oceans, but together, we can make a big difference. We support the ongoing commitment Sailors for the Sea has made to educating the sailing community on the threats to oceans and coastal waters and empowering sailors – from youth to experienced life-long recreational and professional sailors – on the actions they can take to protect marine health for generations to come.”
Since joining 1% for the Planet in 2006, Velocitek has supported a number of our nonprofit parters in addition to Sailors for the Sea. We are proud of Velecitek’s environmental commitment and thank them for their continued support of our network.
The South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL) began the film festival in 2003 with the goal to show environmentally focused films that not only informed audiences, but also inspired and motivated viewers to take action. Every year the California-based festival hits the road with a selection of short films, providing the opportunity for organizations all around the country to host a festival, show a selection of films, and inspire a local audience.
The festival also played host to a celebration. The film selection was inspired by the 40th anniversary of the Clean Water Act, a passage that made a significant impact on the regulation of water quality. To commemorate the anniversary, the festival featured 10 award-winning and water-inspired short films. Among the chosen films were The Craziest Idea, One Plastic Beach, andSeasons: Winter, which we highly recommend checking out. You could really feel the emotion in the room as everyone watched the awe-inspiring films together.
We were thrilled by the member and partner support the festival received in the days leading up to the event. The 1% FTP Network was in action, as members and partners came together to celebrate the Clean Water Act while creating an engaging and fun environment for the general public to learn more about VNRC, the beneficiary of this year’s event.
Thanks to everyone who participated and to those who attended – we hope you had as much fun as we did! If you’re interested in learning more about the Wild & Scenic Film Festival and want to find out when they’re headed to your neck of the woods, check out the schedule HERE.
The following entry and pictures were sent to us by our friends at the Coastside Land Trust, a 1% for the Planet recipient. We hope you take a minute to read it, and learn about the importance of land stewardship!
What do you do when you have a large conservation easement that has been overgrown with thistle, grasses and other plants and you want to “mow” it in an environmentally sensitive way? Who are you going to call? “Goats-R-Us” of course!
The community of Half Moon Bay is located on “The Peninsula” in San Mateo County, California. It is a 30 minute drive from San Francisco International Airport and Silicon Valley, and just a hair longer from San Francisco. But this community is a world away from these urbanized areas. It is defined by dramatic coastal bluffs, working farmlands and stunning open space. One of our nonprofit partners, the Coastside Land Trust (“CLT”) is dedicated to preserving, protecting and enhancing this beautiful open space environment.
One of the parcels for which CLT has a conservation easement, is the right of way for the abandoned Ocean Shore Railroad, which ceased operation in 1921. This beautiful area parallels the western-most street in the southern portion of Half Moon Bay and is a gateway to the casual trails of the coastal bluffs. It is vegetated in grasses, thistle, native wildflowers and other native plants. In the late summer the vegetation browns and requires mowing, but using a tractor-pulled mower would kick-up lots of dust and debris, spread the seeds of non-native species and thistle and possibly harm some of the native plants.
So CLT turned to Goats R Us. This family-owned company contracts its specially bred and trained goats throughout Northern California for grazing. The goats are trained to eat just about everything on the ground: Bristly Ox-tongue, thistle, and native and non-native grasses, Monterey Pines and willow. A shepherd erects a portable electric fence around the site, the goats are hauled-in and he and his two dogs watch the herd while the goats eat to their heart’s content. When they finish grazing a section, the shepherd moves the fence and the dogs herd them along.
CLT leveraged the goats into an opportunity to involve and educate the community in good stewardship practices. Flyers were distributed to residents in the immediate area alerting them to the impending arrival of the goats. Volunteers and staff went door-to-door seeking donations of water for the goats. (Hoses had to be run from the houses to the right of way, and water is expensive on the coast). A donor stepped-up to defray much of the cost of the herd. CLT created an “adopt a goat” program to raise money to bring the goats back next year: for a $10 donation a person can adopt a goat for 2013. One of its volunteers photographed the goats in action and created note cards available for purchase from CLT. All of these donations and proceeds will go into a special “2013 Goat Fund.”
The program was a great success. Over 200 goats were on the site for about 10 days; their fenced area was moved almost daily. They became a local “hit”, and many residents came to the site with their families to watch the goats in action. The site was eaten clean, with the exception of some of the thistle stems and larger shrubs. The seed pods on the thistle stems will be clipped by hand and bagged by CLT volunteers in order to prevent seed spreading. And so far CLT has 30 goats sponsored for next year – far short of its goal, but a good start!
Some people think of land trusts as merely land owners but CLT makes an extra effort to be a good steward of the lands it owns and manages. Through its volunteers and generous donations, both large and small, CLT has been able to improve and enhance the beautiful open space areas of the Half Moon Bay community. 1% for the Planet members are invited to visit the CLT office and its art gallery on Main Street the next time they are in Northern California. The goats may be dining elsewhere, but visitors will be impressed by the beauty and wildlife of the coastal bluffs, and they will understand why CLT volunteers work so hard to keep the bluffs in their natural state.
It’s no secret that unlabeled-GMO foods are everywhere. But how did these organisms become so prevalent in our fields and on our dinner tables? Have they been tested, and just how dangerous are they? And how is it, that even after the disasters at Chernobyl and Fukushima, nuclear power is still seen as the energy source of the future?
These questions are on everyone’s mind, leading us to wonder whether we have all become human guinea pigs. In the kind of world where even farmers are afraid of the chemicals they use on their fields, director Jean-Paul Jaud takes a politically engaged and activist stance with TOUS COBAYES?(in English, All of us guinea-pigs now?).
He is joined by actor and theatre director Philippe Torreton who has lent his voice as narrator. With a deep conviction that movies should play an active role in protecting our ecosystem and our planet, Jaud dares to denounce the status quo and advocate new solutions. Through stunning footage, powerful interviews and an explosive conclusion, TOUS COBAYES?, sheds new light on the dangers of GMOs and nuclear power. It’s bound to spur lively debate.
One of our largest French members, Lea Nature, donates a portion of their contribution each year to a number or organizations who oppose GMOs and nuclear energy. Together with help from Lea Nature and many other groups, these organizations have created TOUS COBAYES?.
This movie is being launched in Montreal on the nights of October 18th and 21st. We hope that you are able to attend and if so, please share your thought with us! The labeling of GMOs is an important issue around the world these days and we want to hear what your views are!
As you know, our business members are frequently featured on our blog, and our non-profit partners do not get much attention. To change this, we are going to start a new series of blog posts where we feature stories about our non-profit partners! So if you want us to feature a story about your non-profit here, please email it to Pauline at email@example.com. Our first post (and pictures) were sent to us by our friends at MESA, who have received a number of donations from 1% FTP members… Enjoy!
Ana owns a grocery store in her home community of Mala, Peru – but her contribution to Mala goes much farther than her store.
In 2008, Ana became a Steward with Multinational Exchange for Sustainable Agriculture (MESA), a 1% non-profit partner dedicated to advancing the next generation of farmers through sustainable agriculture training and cultural exchange. As a MESA Steward, Ana trained with Terry’s Berries Farm in Washington state to learn more about organic food production and distribution. She returned to the U.S. in 2011 to complete MESA’s Next Level Program and spent the year learning about organic food marketing and store management with the Natural Grocery Company in El Cerrito and Berkeley, California.
Armed with these two experiences, Ana returned to her home community not only more informed and prepared to expand her business, but inspired to create positive change for her fellow farmers in Mala. During her time as a MESA Steward, she experienced working environments in which men and women can work side by side as equals and are given the same opportunities for advancement – not something she knew to be true in her home community. As many MESA Stewards choose to do, Ana decided to develop a Home Country Project – an initiative designed by the Steward and funded with the help of MESA and individual donors. Ana’s objective is to establish a women farmers association – Mujeres Unidas por Agricultura – to serve Mala and surrounding communities and improve organic production and local distribution. Check out her video about this project here.
Stories like Ana’s make up the roots of the sustainably-grown planet that MESA is working to realize. As an organization dedicated to global change, MESA is a proud part of the 1% for the Planet community. Learn more about MESA on their website!