Small Steps campaign a ‘success’

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The small steps add up – that’s the message the Biosphere Institute of the Bow Valley says locals are learning through its recent Small Steps campaign.

The Biosphere saw hundreds of submissions to the year-long challenge for local residents, businesses and visitors to take a sustainable step in their daily lives.

Executive director Melanie Watt said she was impressed with the volume and variety of Small Steps submissions received during the educational online sustainability challenge.

“The variety of Small Steps is really impressive and you are bound to see some neighbours, friends or family included in the photos,” Watt said. “While most participants have entered one or two Small Steps, we were all really impressed with Sophia, a five year old girl whose mother entered photographs of Sophia taking 10 different sustainable Small Steps in the Bow Valley. People like Sophia and her mom are really inspiring.”

The website www.biosphereinstitute.org/small-steps includes 250 photos of the people and groups that entered the contest. The prize – an iPad Air – was awarded to Canmore resident Ali Morrison, who entered by setting up a worm compost bin as her Small Step.

It brings the campaign full circle for Watt, because Morrison began composting with worms after taking a Biosphere workshop. She has been so successful at it, Morrison has provided several of her neighbours with their own worm bins.

Inspiration is not far away when you search through the photos submitted by Bow Valley residents, Watt said. There is a wide variety of ideas that are easily accessible or adaptable into people’s lifestyles to create a more sustainable world.

From reusable coffee cups to solar panels, and some unique ideas in between, Watt said she is pleased with the campaign’s results and plans to continue its success.

Funded in part by the Calgary Foundation, the Small Steps campaign is based on the idea that big changes start with small steps and when people act together, small actions create big changes.

“We had a fun prize for the first year and we are going to keep going because we have had such great uptake,” Watt said. “I think the campaign was really successful because people were talking about what others were doing and they were passing it along.”

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Rocky Mountain Outlook