At Plenty Canada we’ve done our best to place our collective intelligence and human values at the forefront of our work. By collective intelligence, we refer to evidence-based knowledge and the philosophy of Two-Eyed Seeing as developed by our board member Albert Marshall. We believe that societies should make sound decisions based upon factual information devoid of special interest influences, which remain the primary cultural and political factors negating progressive work to stop global warming, as but one example.
Our community, however, is one with which we are proud to be associated. It is a community that seeks lifelong learning and the application of determined — Indigenous and scientific — knowledge. We understand that adherence to greedy, negative, and destructive ideologies and practices are harmful not only to ourselves as humans, but to all living creatures on the planet. Our community possesses humility and healthy self-worth, balanced with empathy, so that wise decisions can be made for ourselves and future generations.
As we near the holidays, we reflect upon all of the wonderful people with whom we’ve been active on a wide variety of projects over the past year, and say thank you. In particular, I want to state that at Plenty Canada we see our projects as manifestations, expressions of our knowledge, values, and intentions, which we share with our partners and funders.
Our value of living with minimal impact upon the environment resulted in our renovated and recently unveiled office complex, the Plenty Canada CampUs in Lanark, which has achieved energy negative status. In addition, our Six Nations Bureau office has done much the same, adding solar panels to become fully energized by the Earth’s natural power plant, that nuclear fusion reactor in the sky, the sun. As a result, Plenty Canada facilities have become demonstration sites for sustainable living and working practices. We encourage all of our partner organizations to also work toward carbon neutral status and visit our Lanark offices for demonstration tours.
Another long-term project Plenty Canada is wrapping up involved more than three years of work to establish what we are calling the Greenbelt Indigenous Botanical Survey. With funding provided by the Greenbelt Foundation, our team of Indigenous ethnobotanists and scientists from the University of Guelph, guided by the vision and energy of Dr. Jessica Dolan and Senior Advisor Tim Johnson, will be launching a new and exciting web platform containing detailed information on Indigenous plant species located within 23 Indigenous heritage locations throughout the Greenbelt. Knowledge of the existence of these plants combined with advocacy to protect and preserve Ontario’s Greenbelt, as is done through partner organizations like the Niagara Escarpment Biosphere Network, have gone hand-in-hand in ensuring these precious life forms, our living relatives, are valued and survive on protected lands.
Therefore, we take this moment to express our gratitude to all those who embrace empirical knowledge and who align with us, not as ideologues, but as informed and loving human beings desiring to do good in the world.
Chi Miigwech. Niá:wen. Merci. Thank you.