Sunny Seeds: Helping the environment with Sunflower Power

Jill Sturdy

Jill Sturdy, NatureHood Program Manager

Here at Nature Canada, we have found the next generation of voices for nature! A third grade class from the Lakeview Public School in Ottawa created a business, Sunny Seeds, with the proceeds of  $676.00 in sales donated to Nature Canada.

Last Thursday, on June 7th, our NatureHood Program Manager, Jill Sturdy was invited to visit the class and present the work that Nature Canada is doing. Although, Jill had brought gifts for the students the true surprise was the level of enthusiasm, commitment and passion that the class showed.

When the Grade 3 class first started their business, they partnered with BMO to develop the business model. After setting the groundwork of their business plan, they researched several local charities whose mission aligned with their intent. After many hours of research, the students decided that their their business mandate aligned with that of Nature Canada’s. The students were happy to know that we help connect Canadians with Nature and by selling sunflowers they were doing so too.

The Sunny Seeds came to the forefront of our attention at our local Bird Day event, when they were sharing our booth at the Ottawa Children’s Festival to sell their Sunny Seeds. These students drew people towards their booth and were convincing enough to have them support their cause. Their high quality sunflower seeds came from the Ontario Seed Company and packs were sold for $3.50 each and two for $6.   At their first event they had already raised an impressive $183.00. Needless to say, they were impressed with our history; 75 years strong and over 63 million acres of parks and wildlife areas protected. Sunny Seed’s goal is “to get people to grow sunflowers to help the environment.”

“Did you know, when you plant sunflower seeds, you remove all the toxins from the soil and air?” a student  excitedly shared with Jill. “Sunflowers help with pollution.”  

Not only did Sunny Seeds raise awareness for the environment, but by planting and growing these sunflower seeds, they reminded us how important native plants are for pollination.

Since sunflowers are a popular flower during summer, this is the perfect time to plant some in your own back yard. Sunflowers are known to produce a sweet pollen mixture that attracts bees and other insects. When the pollinators arrive, they get their feet wet with the pollen as they drink the plant’s nectar. The plant relies on this pollination process and so do we.

We didn’t have to spend much time with the students to realize how well prepared they were!

The students recounted their Bird Day experience with excitement. They were overjoyed to welcome home migratory birds from down south for the summer as well as learn about different species of birds. We were equally excited to learn that the students can spot and name many endangered species and birds in their own backyards.

Sunny Seeds have made our lives brighter and we want to thank this incredible class and their exceptional leader, Miss Lindsay Mattesz for making a difference with SUNFLOWER POWER.

Thank you to the Grade 3 class at Lakeview Public School!

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