Here at SP, we don’t just talk our talk--we walk it. And in some cases, we run it.

I’ve never been a big fan of sports. Especially running. Every time I’ve tried to get into running, suddenly a million other activities (rock climbing, biking, yoga, doing the dishes…) seem much more enticing. But a few months ago, three colleagues and I committed to joining the Tamarack Ottawa Race 5km run. Why? Because we wanted to run for biodiversity.

[[{"type":"media","view_mode":"media_original","fid":"1523","attributes":{"alt":"","class":"media-image","height":"465","style":"color: rgb(34, 34, 34); font-family: Arial, Verdana, sans-serif; font-size: 12px;","typeof":"foaf:Image","width":"621"}}]]



SP is quickly becoming a go-to for the latest discussions of biodiversity – just check out SPs recent biodiversity offsets paper(external link) and the highlights from our biodiversity offsets conference(external link). So, running for this cause seemed like a ‘natural’ fit.

We ran to support the Unitarian Service Committee of Canada’s Seeds for Survival Program(external link) in their goal to promote food-security for farmers in developing countries. Aside from being more affordable, traditional local crop varieties are often more nutritious and are better adapted to challenging growing conditions than non-native varieties.

By participating in the Run for Biodiversit(external link)y as part of Ottawa race weekend(external link), we joined a much larger team of 123 Ottawa runners who helped raise over $10,000 for this program. The money will help the program host workshops that teach seed-saving techniques to preserve crop diversity in Ethiopia.

Despite my aversion to sports, I had a lot of fun participating in this run. The weather cooperated perfectly. Even the short rain shower at the last kilometre was a welcome cool-down during the final push. And when the refreshing raindrops fell on my hot skin, I couldn’t help but think of the Ethiopian crop fields that have suffered devastating droughts over the years. Droughts that are only predicted to get worse with climate change.

As I ran past crowds of people cheering me on, I felt energized knowing that I was making a small contribution to such an important issue. I felt proud to be part of a workplace that expresses our values beyond what we put on paper.



And this run isn’t the only example of SP’s Do-Tank nature- last month during working hours, SP staff visited the Ottawa Mission, where we helped prepare food for hundreds of residents in need.

And there’s no stopping us now. Keep watching as SP continues to get busy with the Do-Tank model!