Recycle-Action is taking applications for its Dollar-a-Tonne program until March 1, 2018.

The initiative was first launched in 2011, when Recycle-Action’s operations expanded, prompting a move to its current location on Spence Street.

Back then, Recycle-Action promised that for every tonne of recyclable material received, one dollar would be put aside for grants.

“Recycle-Action is a social enterprise. We like to give back to the people,” stated Robert Lessard, Operations Manager.

The money put aside for Dollar-a-Tonne takes the form of available funds, to be used exclusively for environmental projects and/or activities by local youth.

The funds are divided by region and are based on the amount of material sent.

“I just finished the numbers for 2017. Hawkesbury, East Hawkesbury and Champlain (who together form one region) have sent a total of 1,517 tonnes, which will translate to $1,517 in available funds,” said Lessard.

Lessard also confirmed a few other numbers. Alfred-Plantagenet’s contribution translates to $821, La Nation to $920 and Casselman, $274.

“These amounts are available to groups, organisations, schools… As long as they’re used by youth 21 and under for environmental protection efforts of any kind. Pleasant Corners Public School, for example, used the funds to build an outdoor classroom. Another high school planted trees,” said Lessard.

A shout-out to schools

Bruno Lecot, volunteer spokesperson for the Dollar-a-Tonne initiative, has been visiting schools in the area to make sure they were aware of the available funds.

According to Lecot, there are many ways to use the funds and schools shouldn’t hesitate to apply.

“There’s one group in École secondaire catholique de Casselman, for instance, that has been making yoga mats out of recycled plastic bags. Funds could be used for fabrication and transportation since they’re sending them out to people who otherwise couldn’t afford one.”

Many schools have already applied and those participating will be showcasing their work at the 2018 Champlain Commercial and Community Fair, which takes place at the Vankleek Hill Arena on April 14 and 15.

According to Suzanne Hocquard, Social Enterprise Development Agent for Groupe Convex, this year’s event will feature a village built by the participating students, on top of their respective Dollar-a-Tonne projects.

“The facades will be made from recycled material as well,” confirmed Hocquard, who invites everyone to come and see what local students have achieved with the funds.

Interested in applying for funds?

All project ideas for Dollar-a-Tonne may be submitted through a form, available on demand via email. Those interested may contact Suzanne Hocquard at Groupe Convex by phone (1 613 676-0569) or email ([email protected]).