No community can build lasting, effective climate solutions if the people most affected by the climate crisis are off to one side of the conversation, or left out completely.
That’s why the Ottawa Climate Equity Initiative, a year-long project funded by the Government of Canada and led by OCAF (an initiative of the Ottawa Community Foundation) in partnership with Ecology Ottawa, brought together more than a dozen organizations from the climate and social inclusion communities to build relationships grounded in trust, common values, and shared priorities.
By getting to know each other—sometimes by meeting for the first time—the groups created space to work together more closely on climate impacts and solutions.
“We’ve identified common areas of interest, like green jobs and affordable housing in walkable, 15-minute neighbourhoods,” said OCAF Executive Director Steve Winkelman. “And now we know each other well enough to pick up the phone to share an idea, offer support, ask an (embarrassing) question, or pursue opportunities and co-create success.”
“One of the key things we wanted to achieve in this program was to provide leaders in climate change and social equity the space to connect and create based on shared priorities,” said Sana Badruddin, Ecology Ottawa’s project manager. “I’m in awe of the knowledge, dedication, and talent of our partner organizations, and I’m sure these collaborations will be a step toward a more resilient, sustainable, equitable city.”
The project built essential links between local groups engaged with the climate emergency and social equity organizations to foster connections outside traditional climate circles. The report highlights the tremendous work accomplished by our partners through this inter-sectoral collaboration.
Click here for a summary of the Ottawa Climate Equity Initiative.