On June 26, the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® and Habitat for Humanity National Capital Region helped change the lives of an Ottawa-area family through the first-of-its-kind SFI® “Women in Wood” Build Day. This special day involved a “Wall Raising,” in which the house progressed from a basic foundation into a framework of a brand-new home.
The “Women in Wood” team was led by SFI President and CEO Kathy Abusow and included a number of high-profile, prominent women hailing from the Ottawa area in government, business, environmental, and social sectors: Joanne Laskoski, editor-in-chief, Capital Woman magazine; Kirsten Vice, vice-president, Canadian Operations, National Council for Air and Stream Improvement, and Tracey Clark, managing director of Bridgehead, leading in fair-trade organic coffee, participated withAbusow on the build. Despite being from different fields, all of these women share the common passion of making a difference in their communities.
This project had a transformational effect in the lives of Ida Kakekagumick and her three grandchildren. As members of the Ojibwa-Cree First Nation, they are one of the first Ontario Aboriginal families to be helped through a Habitat for Humanity project.
Much of the wood used for this Build Day was certified to the SFI Standard, including a significant donation from LP Building Products; this means the lumber came from responsibly managed forests. Irving Tissue division has also generously donated a six-month supply of tissue and bathroom products certified to the SFI Standard to the family of this home. The home is also the first in the Ottawa area to be certified as a Built Green Canada home.
As an organization dedicated not only to promoting responsible forestry, but also to community building and on-the-ground collaboration, the SFI team was incredibly excited to be involved in this project. For more information please visit www.sfiprogram.org/
Since 2008, SFI has partnered with more than a dozen various Habitat for Humanity builds across Canada and the U.S. Through these partnerships, more than 4,000 volunteer hours and significant supplies of certified building materials (panel products, lumber, and engineered wood products) have been donated.