We’ve been fundraising through our “Fix It” events in Courchevel, Meribel and Morzine. By keeping ski gear out of landfill through our repair station and running “Bring and Buy” rails of donated clothing, we’ve been able to raise funds that have been used to plant trees.
We’ve started off in two locations, the first here in the French Rhône-Alpes through our company portal at MyTree, and the second through Trees for the future, an organisation that plants trees for families in Africa. This gives communities the ability to transition from unsustainable farming techniques to a Forest Garden system, where tree planting not only sustains and empowers, but also changes lives forever.
One Tree at a Time – Planting Project in the Rhône-Alpes
We’ve started a project with MyTree to plant here, in France, in the Rhône-Alpes region.
In the Rhône-Alpes, hedges and trees have gradually disappeared. The regrouping of agricultural plots and the mechanisation of agriculture in the 1960s to the 90s completely re-drew the agricultural landscape. While this allowed better operating conditions it also eliminated traditional landscapes, such as hedges, low walls and embankments.
These natural elements are essential to ecological balance. Farmers aware of this are anxious to develop sustainable agricultural practices by reintroducing trees in their fields and meadows.
Driven by the association Union of Forests and Hedges Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes, the project aims to reintroduce trees on several farms (Cantal, Drôme, Ardèche, Isère) and initiate a change of practices by reconciling production with the environment, and promoting sustainability in farms.
When planted in parallel lines in the middle of crops or at the edge of plots, trees contribute to agricultural production, crop and herd protection, water quality, soil fertility and the biodiversity.
- Reduction of wind and water erosion and therefore greater soil protection, while simultaneously providing organic matter to improve the structure and diversity of soil microorganisms.
- Protection of water sources against diffuse pollution, particularly nitrates.
- Restoration of local biodiversity by creating wildlife corridors.
- Improved agricultural performance, and improved resilience of the agricultural system to climate change.
The Union of Forests and Hedges Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes brings together the professional organisations of the private forest and their partners. It has, for 22 years, been dedicated to hedgerow and agroforestry via the project “Mission Hurdles”. The objective is to preserve and develop linear hedgerows.
At the same time, the project is also developing actions to preserve existing hedges and raise awareness of the sustainable management of the hedgerow, in order to give farmers the desire to better manage and maintain their farmland, providing both a dual economic and environmental objective.
One Tree at a Time – Planting Project in Africa
Through Trees For The Future we have planted over 40,000 trees. They’re an organisation that takes a different approach to farming through their Forest Gardens.
They identify a group of farmers—typically 300 families at a time —who have both a great need for assistance and a high likelihood of success. Farmers provide the land, labor, and water; a powerful, entrepreneurial determination; and an inspiring sense of ownership. TREES provides training, mentoring, seeds, and nursery supplies with each family. They guide the large groups of farmers through the process of using trees to protect, diversify, and eventually optimise their crop land. They continue working with farmers for the four years it takes to fully establish the Forest Garden, offering ongoing coaching and regular site visits.
Their latest 2018 Impact Report provides detailed information on their approach and impact.
We’ve had a fantastic response to the campaign and we want to say a massive thank you to all those that have helped repair clothing, donated ski gear and generally provided support.