THE PROJECT GALLERY
"The Project Gallery" is a perpetual work in progress!
Keep scrolling to learn a little more about the thoughtful origins of each of our MapleWishes.
Here, we will share with you, in greater detail, the development and evolution of each of our MapleWishes.
The Butterfly Project
Our grandfather was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2009. In 2015, Rowan decided that she wanted to raise awareness about Parkinson's at our school. She decided, that year, to make 120 Rainbow Loom bracelets for the girls and staff at her school. Since then she has annually crafted and distributed an assortment of tokens for the 450+ students and staff of our school, including magnets (2016), keychains (2017) and bookmarks (2018). Each item bears a butterfly - a symbol of hope inspired by Muhammad Ali’s quote “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee”.
Our dad has been participating in the "Lap the Gats" bike race since its inception in 2014. The proceeds of this annual fundraising event go towards supporting Parkinson's research at the Ottawa Hospital (The Parkinson's Research Consortium) under the auspice of Drs. David Park, David Grimes and Michael Schlossmacher. We decided to support our dad and the research endeavor by raising money with the sale of Rowan's butterfly tokens. Our ultimate goal is to raise $50,000. We have raised close to $11,000 to date.
Homeless to Home
Founded in 1906, The Ottawa Mission stands as a pillar in providing the local homeless with food, shelter and clothing. The Mission is further charged with offering addiction rehabilitation, primary medical & dental care and job training services. The biggest need fulfilled by The Mission is food and the kitchen at The Ottawa Mission serves an average of 1307 meals a day - 477,177 just last year alone.
Shepherds of Good Hope offers many life-giving programs and services to the more than 1600 men and women who walk through their doors each day. In addition to the Soup Kitchen, the Grocery, Clothing, Shelter and Supportive Housing Programs address the needs of the many in-need across the city.
The Youth Services Bureau of Ottawa provides food, shelter, safety and health services to Ottawa's youth at risk. Their doors are open to over 1000 homeless and vulnerable youth. Their myriad of health, crisis, educational and employment services strive to provide youth with the knowledge and skills necessary to make positive life choices.
#Project: A Sandwich or 2
We started making ham & cheese sandwiches and baked goods for The Ottawa Mission in September, 2016. What started out as a biweekly offering of 50 sandwiches has to date evolved into just over 7000 sandwiches. We aim to meet a minimum target of 1500 sandwiches annually, but aspire to surpass this with a communal effort from our friends!
#Project: Warm Hearts
It's cold outside! Winter 2017 - our 1st annual #Project Warm Hearts initiative amassed 3000 "warm" and much needed items for the 3 Ottawa shelters.
#Project: A Box of Socks
We think we have inspired a few like minded friends at school. Together, we will hold an annual sock drive & sock hop in the hopes of symbolically and literally providing 1 pair of socks for every homeless youth in Ottawa.
2018 & 2019: 1400 socks ♥
February 2017 - Rowan’s grade 4 class partook in the "InCoWriMo Challenge", wherin the girls were asked to write a letter a day during the month of February. The experience of communicating by way of a medium largely foreign to our generation afforded the girls a unique appreciation for the power of the written word and the time and effort put in to crafting a hand-written letter.
We have decided to continue a slightly modified campaign of correspondance with letters, emails and/or postcards to our friends & mentors, businesses & politicians and even people we do not know but who may appreciate a friendly word or two. We have set for ourselves a goal of reaching 1000 people by 2025.
#Project: What's your MapleWish
Words of wisdom from truly inspiring people.
Skip to following page to be inspired!
Feeding the Future
An end to hunger in a world with theoretically enough food to feed an ever-growing population. Possible or not?
A profound change of the global food and agriculture system is needed if we are to feed the 815 million people who are undernourished today and the additional 2 billion people expected to be undernourished by 2050.
But what does this change look like?
Agroforestry practices, crop breeding, urban farming, large scale hydroponic systems, and innovation in rain-fed agriculture are but a few considerations in effecting the change that will be required to move towards sustainable food production and distribution.
The challenges facing first world and third world communities have for long been vastly differnent. However, the growing global population, increasing urban poverty, climate change, and natural disaster are all threatening to narrow this divide.
Action on community, municipal, national, and global levels are all needed to foster the changes in practices and mindset that are required to ultimately end hunger.
The Wishing Well
Once upon a time, back in Grade 2, we were a taught a song that went something like this:
One song can spark a moment, one flower can wake the dream.
One tree can start a forest, one bird can herald Spring.
One smile begins a friendship, one handclasp lifts a soul.
One star can guide a ship at sea, one word can frame the goal.
One vote can change a nation, one sunbeam lights a room.
One candle wipes out darkness, one laugh will conquer gloom.
One step must start each journey, one word must start each story.
One hope will raise a s spirit, one touch can show you care.
One voice can speak with wisdom, one heart can know what's true.
One life can make a differnce, you see, it's up to you!
Based upon a poem by Ashish Ram, the words of this song impart the notion that even a single person can effect change and make a difference.
#Project: The Wishing Well
We started MapleWishes with the hope of inspiring others to support causes important to them. To this end, we will make a donation of $500 to 2 charities, annually, as chosen by a panel of our peers.
We hope this exercise empowers others our age to identify issues of importance and responsibilizes them to be part of the solution.
June 2018: Maya Farrell ♦ Music Heals
Sept. 2018: The Kyle Mackay Support Initiative
Founded in 1993, QUAIL is a nonprofit charitable association that cares for adults with developmental disabilities. Located in Chelsea, Quebec, Quail House is home to 6 permanent residents and also provides respite care to special needs adults.
We have had the opportunity to visit Quail House and were touched and impressed with the commitment by all to provide measures of familiality and independence to the residents of the home.
QUAIL is largely funded through governmental stipends, but relies on donations and fundraising to meet the rest of its needs. One of the more "delicious" fundraising initiatives to arise within the community has been the jams, jellies, chutneys and pickles made in support of QUAIL.
To this end, we have committed to a regular contribution of Rowan's homemade "Better Than Pi" chocolates to QUAIL's fundraising Saturdays at the local Market and other similar fairs.
Our family will continue to share in our community's support of this wonderfully inspiring institution.
More Bees Please
Small steps make a big difference on the path to living more sustainably.
The David Suzuki Foundation has identified a number of enviornmentally relevant issues aimed at protecting the diversity of nature based on the belief that that "we are all interconnected and interdependent with nature".
One particular issue that has captured our interest is the endagerement of multitudes of pollinating bee and butterfly species. We have a particular bias for butterflies but we must admit that we do not necessarily share the same fondness for bees! Our prejudices aside, the vital role that pollinators play in the fertilization and reproduction of plants and crops is unequivocal and their survival in sufficient numbers is imperative to all life.
To this end, we have signed the "Monarch Manifesto" and pledge to actively partake in "bringing the bees and butterflies back", to our corner of the world (Chelsea,Qc. & Ottawa, Ont.) via a well scripted list of actionable items enumerated by the DSF - including the creation of Chelsea's 1st Monarch Waystation (ID 19067, March 2018).
I N S p i R E
We like math. A lot.
We have heard people say that "math is not for everyone". This is absurdly untrue!
Granted there will always be differences between students but John Mighton, the founder of "Jump Math" believes that such inequalities can be minimized by recognizing and nurturing a child's individual non-linear learning potential. He believes that paying attention to how a child learns is as equally important as the content of their lessons.
Shirin Lutfeali , the architect behind "Numeracy Boost", believes that math should not be professed as a subject simply to be learnt in a classroom - that math is everywhere - an integral part of every aspect of life.
Although marks do literally make the grade these days, we personally believe that they do not define one's ability or even more importantly, their potential.
You can follow Rowan's BetterThanPi site here:
⊕ Click to View BTP site
My Canada is a country rich with the colourful beads of intertwining cultures.
We are not represented by a single strand of colour but by countless of threads woven together into the fabric of our diversity.
We are not defined by a singular ideology but by an ever-evolving collage of never ending dreams.
Because My Canada is a proud mosaic of 36.7 million glowing hearts bound together by extraordinary stories and an abundance of character. -AP
My Canada is nation of persistence.
We are not defined by a single success, but by the hundreds of drafts that it took to attain perfection.
We are not the product of the individual that leads but the sum total of the parts that work together to pave the way for the dreams and aspirations of our tomorrow.
We are families forever ready to lend a hand...communities of neighbours with enough room at the table for one more.
Because My Canada believes in her descendents and the strength of the generations to follow. -AP
The Kisaruni Group of Schools - a WE Charity initiative whose foundation has been built up the WE Village developmental pillars of education, water, health, food and access to opportunity.
The Kisaruni philosophy strives to build on cultural values, promote leadership, value diversity, and encourage active learning. In fact, the first tenet of their school philosophy is "being community".
The Milimani & Oleleshwa all-girls secondary schools opened their doors in 2011 and 2013 respectively. The schools have literally transformed the lives and communities of their learners, empowering the girls to grow beyond centuries of tradition.
The Ngulot boys campus opened their doors in January 2017 to provide equitable educational opportunity to boys. It's opening further helps ensure that the newly educationally empowered young women of the community find kindered spirits in their male counterparts in an otherwise largely patriarchal society.
We are honoured to have participated in the 2017 graduation ceremonies of Milimani & Oleleshwa. It was a monumental moment for a community of girls whose circumstances would otherwise have never permitted education beyond primary schooling. We are humbled to have shared the moment when 4 years of the impossible suddenly become real and forever life-changing.
It has been said that "reading is dreaming with your eyes open". As avid readers we truly believe that books give you access to a world of ideas and experiences that even a lifetime of living may not impart. Personally, we have enjoyed the luxury of amply filled libraries and bookstores since we can remember. We have been lucky enough to enjoy unlimited access to people, places and cultures unbound by time or distance.
But access to books and digital reading materials is more than just good for the soul - it is imperative to elevating the quality of education for all children regardless of means.
First Book Canada is committed to providing books and digital resources to programs and schools serving kids in need. We in turn pledge to support this cause through the support of their "Read, Grow, Learn & Succeed" stocking programs.
We further plan to organize an annual book drive at our school, the proceeds of which will be donated to the Ottawa Public Library donation program.
- Maison Libre-Elles, Chelsea-Qc
- CIBC Run for the Cure
- Youth Service Board of Ottawa, SleepOUT
- The Coldest Night of the Year - The Ottawa Mission
- Walk In Her Shoes - CARE Canada
- La March en Rose - La Fondation de Santé Quebec
- Myeloma Canada
- Ride To Conquer Cancer - BC Cancer Foundation