By Andrew Ardizzi
Toronto, Ontario -- October 23, 2013 -- The Automotive Recyclers of Canada (ARC) and Summerhill Impact have announced a new national charitable funding program that will award $100,000 to non-profit organizations and entrepreneurial groups so they may develop environmentally conscious initiatives.
"The aim of 'Grants in Gear' is to extend the environmental benefits achieved through the dedication of ARC and its members' environmental best practices," says Steve Fletcher, managing director of ARC. "Just as gears in a vehicle work together to achieve a greater goal, this program will connect ARC funding with Canadian NGOs and entreprenuerial groups that share our vision for the environment."
The funds for the program have been generated through the numerous vehicle retirement programs that ARC and its members have employed over the years, with a portion of the revenues from each vehicle in ARC's vehicle retirement program going into the charitable fund.
Four grants will be available to organizations whose environmetally conscious ideas will make a positive impact in the areas of waste diversion, energy savings, emission reductions, pollution prevention and automotive recycling excellence. The four submissions will receive up to $25,000 in grant funds, while ARC will additionally award a Green Recycled Parts Impact Award worth $5,000 to the applicant best able to show how additional funds will be used to help them realize their long term goals, or increase their idea's sustainability.
To help execute the grant program, ARC is working with longtime, not-for-profit environment partner Summerhill Impact. ARC and Summerhill have previously worked together on a number of successful initatives including the Canadian Auto Recyclers Environmental Code (CAREC), the national Switch Out program, and Retire Your Ride.
"The grant program is a great way to help Canadian organizations get their environmentally conscious ideas off the ground and make a positive impact for future generations," says Caroline Sturk, account manager with Summerhill. "I think it's going to be something that really helps environment groups and will provide a great opportunity for them secure funding that will help them meet their goals."
She says it's a truly exciting initiative and she is happy to be involved with the "Grants in Gear" program.
"Summerhill is proud to be partnering with ARC on this great initiative. Auto recyclers are doing their part for the environment every day and we're excited to recognize organizations that are doing the same," she says.
Fletcher says he's nervously excited about the types of submissions the program will get to see and assess, noting that there is no shortage of innovative Canadian minds across the country. He believes that in the end, as years pass, that the "Grants in Gear" program will be a great way to engage the innovative minds across the country.
He says they want to stress core values through the program, those being entrepreneurialism, environmental preservation, and small, community-based actions.
"We tried to set this up so it represents what we are and what we do locally," he says. "If somebody in Edmonton has a new or better way of doing something, I'm looking forward to seeing what it is. I feel like this is only the beginning, and we're going to keep improving the program each year for years to come."
Those interested in applying for the "Grants in Gear" program can do so online until Nov. 22, 2013. Submissions will then be assessed by a submission review committee, which includes Automotive Recyclers Association President-elect Ed MacDonald and Dr. Steven Young of the University of Waterloo.Â
To read more on Summerhill Impact, you can find them online at summerhill.com.