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Greening Our Lives,
Community & Church

Small steps lead to deep change

During the Regional Gatherings in Saskatchewan, Calling Lakes Centre offered a series of 7 workshops where people were invited to help create a banner as they shared an array of ideas about how to green their lives, communities and churches. At the close of the workshops we read the story After the Beginning by Carolyn Pogue that encouraged us to remember to care for the planet that we call home. This banner, along with the book, will soon be circulated to many church communities who requested to receive it.

Looking at the banner, a convergence of ideas becomes apparent... car pooling ... composting ... fair trade ... The steps may seem small or insignificant, yet when adopted as a way of life, we can become part of the changing wave of consciousness sweeping the planet.

Indeed, many of these ideas have become part of daily life at the Centre. With the hope of adding to the discussion and inspiration, we share some of the practices which are "greening the Centre".

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Vinegar (with water, alcohol and some elbow grease) is the main cleanser used by kitchen and housekeeping. (It’s an antiseptic too). We’ve also used ‘salt and vinegar’ spray on our weeds!

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Composting helps reduce our kitchen waste. Containers placed in the dining room and lounge encourage guests to compost. We have worm bins in the basement and a deluxe outdoor compost system built by the SK Federation of Labour youth camp.

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Our new dishwasher (installed this spring) uses less water, and at cooler temperatures.

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We use fair trade coffee.

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Guests select and use a cloth napkin during their stay.

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We use 100% recycled: office copy paper (most colored papers are 30% recycled), toilet paper, brown paper towel for cleaning (all processed without chlorine).

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The paper used to print this newsletter is elemental chlorine free, 50% recycled including 25% post consumer waste.

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Low flush toilets have been used in all replacements since 2005. Almost half of our toilets are now low flush!

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Compact flourescent bulbs are used in our lamps. Energy efficient ballasts and bulbs were used in the recent refurbishing of Katepwa Room. The lighting feels nicer too!

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We recycle tin, plastic, paper and drink containers. There are recycling containers in the lodges & meeting rooms for guest use.

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Straw mulch has been used to reduce weeds and conserve moisture in flower beds. It lasts for several years too.

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We encourage car pooling by emailing transportation offers and requests to program registrants.

Check our web site for a new "greening" page in the next month or so. There you will find a listing of all the ideas recorded on the banner and more about what we are doing at the Centre. If you would like the banner to visit your congregation, let us know.

 

Other articles from this Echo:

Letter from Linda Anderson, Calling Lakes Director

Courage to Lead: Circle of Trust Retreat

Greening Our Lives, Community and Church

    ~  Straw Bale Building

Our Thanks!

In Memory of the Ferguson's

 
 
 

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Copyright © 2006 Calling Lakes Centre
Box 159, Fort Qu'Appelle, Saskatchewan Canada S0G 1S0
Phone: 306-332-5691 Fax:306-332-5264
Email: office@callinglakes.ca