Feeding London: Giving Back to the London Food Bank

If you are familiar with CLC Tree Services Ltd, then you know we have a history of giving back to our community. We have some new followers who are still getting to know us though, so let us share a snapshot of what makes us the best in our field. As CLC Tree Services is a small, family-run business, we pride ourselves on offering the best we can, whether that is tree services work or beyond. For us, our community is also part of our family, and if they are hurting and we can do something about it, the right thing to do is to step up.

So today, we stepped up again.

The CLC crew arrives to start lot clearing for the London Food Bank

Calvin McCallum was recently contacted by John Fleming. For those of you unfamiliar with him and his connections, John is the Vice President and a member of the Canadian Urbanism council, a Senior Research Associate in the Human Environments Analysis Laboratory (HEAL) and Adjunct Faculty in the Department of Geography at Western University, not to mention the former Managing Director of Planning with the City of London. Urban planning and design is his speciality, which made him a great contact for Glen Pearson from the London Food Bank.

Glen is a modest man, but it is also safe to say he is a powerhouse of passion. Not only is he a former London Firefighter, former MP for London North Centre, and former chairperson for the Ontario Food Bank Association, he was also instrumental in many other local and international aid organizations, plus, somehow finds time to be a writer while still filling the role of Co-Director of the London Food Bank, alongside his wife, Jane Roy.

Glen Pearson and John Fleming discuss upcoming plans for the London Food Bank with Calvin

So when Calvin heard tell that John and Glen wanted to talk to him, he stopped to listen. They were talking urban planning and food security. Calvin has a keen interest in both and understands the challenges of both. One of the ways they wanted to tackle these issues was by finding more food for hungry people. The London Food Bank currently services over 8,000 people a month. In reality though, that number is much higher, as the London Food Bank also supports several community agencies, like Anova and Atlohsa Family Healing Services, amongst others. While initiatives like their Community Harvest and Plant a Row Grow a Row have increased fresh produce availability to upwards of 54% of their available food on offer, John knew there was more that could be done. His idea for the London Food Bank Board—a greenhouse.

Breaking Ground

It has been a year in progress, but today marked a big step along the way. Calvin heard John and Glen’s plans and, like so many other amazing local businesses, wanted in. So today, the CLC crew was on site at the London Food Bank to clear the lot behind the building for a new greenhouse. If all goes well, by later this summer, there should be tomatoes and beans, radishes and lettuce, eggplants and peppers galore growing to feed London’s hungry.

This initiative couldn’t have come at a better time, with looming fears of food insecurity a possibility due to the current coronavirus. But anytime is the right time to get fresh food to those in need and that was the impetus behind Glen and the London Food Bank Board’s plan. Who doesn’t want to support that?

So what was today? It was an amazing day for CLC Tree Services to give back to the community in which they live. When Calvin understood the magnitude of the project, it was easy to donate the hours to this worthy cause. Because that is what he stands for—community, supporting local, giving back because he can.

Thank you to Glen, John, and the rest of your team for allowing CLC Tree Services to be a part of something great in the Forest City. We hope your initiative flourishes and inspires other local businesses, and other Food Banks across the country.

Stepping up to support food security in the Forest City

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