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Case Studies

New in 2017! Through our work with various faith communities, we are compiling case studies describing what some of those communities have done to green their worship spaces or serve the wider community. The case studies cover a range of our programs, and provide not just examples of what has been done but also inspiration to help your faith community get started.

Regeneration Works Case Studies

Our Regeneration Works: Places of Faith project works with rural and urban places of faith to create community spaces that are both viable and successful. Whether the goal is to keep the doors open or make strategic real estate decisions that serve the faith group and the community, the National Trust and Faith & the Common Good offer hope, inspiration, and solutions based on our work from across the country.  

Visit www.placesoffaith.ca to view a series of two-page case studies of the places we have worked with.

Case Study: St. James Carp

St. James community gardenSt. James the Apostle Church in Carp undertook Green Audits for all three sanctuaries in their parish, the youngest of which is 125 years old!

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Green Audits 2014

Green Audits 2014Nine Anglican parishes across Canada conducted a Greening Sacred Spaces (GSS) Green Audit in their churches in 2013, facilitated and paid in part by the Anglican Church of Canada (ACC). All nine audits were completed between October 22 and December 2 of 2013, with seven in Ontario, one in Quebec, and one in Nova Scotia.

This is a 2014 end of year report concerning their experiences, main audit findings, and the work that has been completed thus far in response to the audit for each of these nine parishes.

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OUTDOOR GREENING CASE STUDIES

OUTDOOR GREENING CASE STUDIES

New in 2018! Read how other faith communities are expanding their mission outdoors through various gardens including xeriscape, labyrinth, pollinator, sacred medicine wheel and wildflower gardens. In the following case studies you will find examples of both larger suburban projects along with small urban sites including sidewalks. Some gardens were initiated with very little money, while others sought out grants and other financial support. Find out how your garden team can do the same with a review of our case studies that include lessons learned and keys to success! A special thanks to our funders the Ottawa Community Foundation and the City of Ottawa (CEPGP) and all the faith communities who shared their stories, photos and enthusiasm for their Care for Creation outdoor projects with us!

Scroll through the 10 case studies. You can download them individually or download the complete set at the bottom of this page. You must be logged in to download these resources.

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1.PNGKitchissippi United Church - Depave Project

Kitchissippi United Church transformed a grey asphalt courtyard into a green lush entranceway that parishioners and building tenants benefit from and enjoy. Green landscapes can help soak up rainwater and lessen the burden of local storm water and sewer systems while also cooling down microclimates that add to the heat island effect of cities…
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1.PNGTrinity Presbyterian Church (Kanata) - Pollinator Garden

The Trinity Presbyterian pollinator garden in Kanata is home to native plants that provide nectar and pollen to beneficial insects and birds. Native pollinators are an essential component to the ecology of plants, ensuring that flowers are fertilized and food can grow. Supporting a variety of pollinators promotes a strong, biodiverse local ecosystem…
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1.PNGTrinity United Church – Wildflower Garden

Trinity United Church’s wildflower garden initially conceived by their Church in Society Committee, was installed in the back lawn of the faith community’s property and has evolved over time.time. Native wildflowers are better able to survive local conditions including temperatures and drought and require less maintenance including pesticides than their more exotic counterparts…
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4.PNGFirst Unitarian – Meditation Garden

The First Unitarian Meditation Gardens have been designed and maintained by the First Unitarian church over the past twenty years for the benefit of all groups on the sixacre campus plus visitors from the entire city. It was designed to be an urban oasis for “relaxation, restoration, observation and meditation”…
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5.PNGCentretown United Church – Sidewalk Community Garden

At Centretown United Church, raised sidewalk planters that held trees for more than 30 years have been transformed by the installation of a community garden. Something valuable has been created from the derelict empty planters for the church, the community and for Centre 507, a downtown Drop-In…
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1.PNGSt. Luke's Anglican – Sidewalk Community Garden

Empty spaces that had once held city shade trees for more than 30 years have been transformed by St. Luke’s Parish through the installation of gardens to grow fresh produce for the local St. Luke’s Table meal program. These gardens are now a valuable community asset and have brought back to life a…
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1.PNGThe Anglican Parish of March_St. John's Church_Outdoor Labyrinth

St John’s Church in Kanata provides an outdoor meditation experience for both its congregation and the larger neighbourhood community with their labyrinth garden. An outdoor labyrinth is a versatile addition to a faith community. A labyrinth walk is a spiritual and meditative tool that can be used for various purposes. It’s also a pleasant and unique landscape design that…
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8.PNGGlebe St. James United Church – Medicine Wheel

The Glebe-St. James United Church Sacred Medicine Wheel garden is a visible sign of the faith community’s allyship with First Nation communities. A Medicine Wheel garden represents the cycles of nature and is grown for medicinal purposes and harvested to be used as peace offerings. The First Nation relationship with…
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1.PNGKnox United Church – Community Garden

With a large expanse of lawn, support from the City of Ottawa’s Community Garden Network Fund and a generous bequest, Knox United Church has created a wonderful local gardening space that is open to both congregants and community members. Community gardens such as these allow people to grow local healthy fresh produce that doesn’t have to…
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10.PNGSpecial Faith Community & Cultural Gardens

This case study shares some of the details of three other special faith community and cultural gardens found in Ottawa. They are an inspiration for their ingenuity, community spirit and cultural significance. Each has a unique focus and approach and have been successful in gathering local support and volunteer dedication…
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all.PNGALL 10 OUTDOOR GREENING CASE STUDIES

All 10 Outdoor Greening Case Studies

Spring 2017

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Greening in Faith Communities: Ten Community Profiles

Greening Faith Communities

Our original “Greening in Faith Communities: Ten Community Profiles” (2008) lists case studies from 10 diverse faith communities from across Ontario, focusing on community actions and building improvements.

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Retrofit and MicroFIT Action in Faith Communities

Retrofit Microfit Case Studies

Our Go Green Case Studies (2013) feature the retrofit and MicroFIT actions of four faith communities, including community action, memorable moments, keys to success, and lessons learned.

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Extreme Weather Resilience Case Studies

Solar Case Studies

The Neighbourhood Extreme Weather Resilience pilot project explored how Toronto’s diverse faith communities could be better utilized as local service centers to help vulnerable populations during extreme weather emergencies. These case studies give a sense of the potential of this work by providing a snapshot of the action plans and community partner engagement at each of the project’s faith pilot sites.

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Solar Case Studies: Follow-ups

Solar Case Studies

We went back in 2015 and revisited 4 of our solar case study partners to see how they were doing 4 years later. Read more about the progress of solar projects at: Neighbourhood Unitarian (NUCC), Toronto; Islington United Church, Etobicoke; Hillcrest Mennonite Church, New Hamburg; and Laidlaw United Church, Hamilton.

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Solar Case Studies

Solar Case Studies

Solar case studies were part of our original Solar Faith Initiative project (2011) to assist and encourage faith communities in successfully navigating the MicroFIT program.

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Mission Per Square Foot Case Studies

MPSF Case Studies

In 2015, we launched a new program called Mission Per Square Foot (MPSF) designed to help any congregation fully harness their building in a way that meets its mission, acknowledges its capacity, protects the environment and serves the larger community. These case studies (from the Ottawa area explore how diverse faith communities are fully and sustainably utilizing their buildings, guided by a clear mission and in service to the larger community. The MPSF program was relabelled Regeneration Works: Places of Faith in 2017.

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