Archive for the ‘Fund Drive’ Category

Dansko Days for the Texas Land Conservancy November 4th – 13th!

Dansko Days for the Texas Land Conservancy November 4th – 13th!

Dansko, through their Texas area rep, has become a generous supporter of one of our favorite conservation groups, the Texas Land Conservancy. For each pair of full price Dansko shoes sold at Whole Earth Provision Co. during Dansko Days, from November 4th through November 13th, our Dansko rep will donate $5 to the Texas Land Conservancy! Dansko Shoes are loved by folks who spend many hours of the day on their feet: teachers, nurses, sales clerks, chefs and their kitchen staff. Dansko shoes are comfortable and they have style. We hope you’ll stop by your favorite Whole Earth and take a look at our Dansko shoes. You’ll find so much more than a basic clog. You may find your new favorite pair of shoes, and you’ll be supporting the Texas Land Conservancy with your purchase.

The Texas Land Conservancy was founded in 1982 by Ned Fritz, known as the father of Texas conservation. Responding to the encroachment of development on natural areas in Texas, Fritz decided that there was a need for a land trust that would take on the preservation of small but important properties that were not large enough to be saved by other organizations. Using conservation easements the Texas Land Conservancy has preserved the physical and ecological integrity of wildlife habitat, native plant communities and scenic landscapes across the state for the benefit of present and future generations of Texans.

Fall Off Creek rests at the border of the Cross Timbers and Blackland Prairies ecoregions, near Fort Hood.

Fall Off Creek rests at the border of the Cross Timbers and Blackland Prairies ecoregions, near Fort Hood.

Most of the property protected by the Texas Land Conservancy is not open to the public. Conservation easements limit development and provide for restoration and land management, but the land still remains in private hands. However, there are nine sites open to the public. Two are in major Texas cities: Oak Cliff Nature Preserve in Dallas and Cibolo Creek Preserve in San Antonio. Throughout the year, some of the other protected properties are open to the public. You can learn about these special days by signing for the group’s emails or social media posts on their website. The Texas Land Conservancy also has a great Instagram feed that celebrates Texas landscapes and wildlife.

So run, run, run to your favorite Whole Earth store, try on some Dansko shoes, and support The Texas Land Conservancy.

Roadrunner wearing Dansko Professionals

Chaco Gives Back Check Presentation 2016

Chaco Gives Back Check Presentation 2016

Whole Earth Customers – you’ve done it again! Our Chaco Gives Back event raised over $6600 for The Friends of Enchanted Rock, bringing your nine year total to almost $37,800. This year’s funds will be used to purchase a rainwater catchment system for the Park’s headquarters. Past projects include interpretive signage, an aerial map of Enchanted Rock, recycling containers and water dispensing stations. Thank you again for your support through the years for Chaco Gives Back. You have truly benefited a very special place here in Texas. From left to right: Bill Horton and Mike Lewis of The Friends of Enchanted Rock, Joe Jones of Whole Earth Provision Co. and Mike Sullivan representing Chaco.

Chaco Gives Back to the Friends of Enchanted Rock!

Chaco Gives Back

Chaco Gives Back returns to Whole Earth Provision Co. starting June 18th and running through July 5th. During these two weeks, for every full price pair of Chaco shoes and sandals purchased at Whole Earth stores, Chaco will donate $5 to the Friends of Enchanted Rock. Enchanted Rock State Natural Area is often short of water, so The Friends are planning to use the money raised this year to create a rainwater collection system for the landscaping around the headquarters building. In addition, our Austin North Lamar store will welcome the Chaco Z the World Tour on Friday, July 1st from 1 to 4 pm. Attractions include – free Kona Ice Snow Cones, swag giveaways, games, a chance to try the Chaco 360° virtual reality experience, and an opportunity to enter the Chaco Sweepstakes. The prize: $5000 in airline travel!

Chacos – photo by Johanna Schmidt

Chacos – photo by Johanna Schmidt

Chaco Footwear, known for their ‘go everywhere, do anything sandals,’ is a very generous contributor to local causes. Since 2008, they have contributed almost $30,000 to the Friends of Enchanted Rock in response to purchases made at Whole Earth Provision Co. stores. The Chaco Gives Back funds have been used for many projects including retrofitting antiquated plumbing fixtures in the Park to low-flow water saving systems; providing funding for visitor trail maps; improving the trail system by reclaiming areas where small game trails had turned into human ones, causing erosion; purchasing recycling receptacles for the Park; and last year, adding Elkay filtered water stations that include taps for the easy filling of reusable water bottles.

Filtered water station at Enchanted Rock. Photo Friends of Enchanted Rock

Filtered water station at Enchanted Rock. Photo Friends of Enchanted Rock

The recycling stations around the park are doing a brisk business. During Spring Break 2016, in just two weeks, park staff and volunteers recycled 269 pounds of plastic bottles from the stations. The annual total has been over 3,000 pounds of plastic bottles. The filtered water stations purchased with Chaco’s 2015 donation have digital counters which show how many bottle fills have been made, and the number is huge: 19,345 fills by the first of May, and that is less than three months after installation! The Friends would like to get that plastic bottle recycling number down, so the park store carries refillable bottles, and they are hoping more and more Park visitors are buying them or bringing their own refillable bottles.

View from the top of Enchanted Rock – photo Sean Bibby

View from the top of Enchanted Rock – photo Sean Bibby

Enchanted Rock is a truly magical place. The exposed pink granite batholith reaches an elevation of 1,825 feet, offering a magnificent panoramic view of the surrounding Hill Country. The rock is ancient, perhaps a billion years old and has been called the Heart of Texas. Enchanted Rock State Natural Area covers over 600 acres and is host to over 500 species of plants that live on the rock itself. Wildlife found in the park includes birds, bats, lizards, squirrels and fox. Park visitors can enjoy hiking, camping, rock climbing, bird watching and stargazing. In 2014, Enchanted Rock was designated an International Dark Skies Park, one of the few in the nation.

The Friends of Enchanted Rock (FOER) is a volunteer, non-profit organization founded in 1999. Their mission is to work in partnership with Texas Parks & Wildlife to promote conservation of Enchanted Rock’s natural and cultural resources through preservation, education and improvement efforts. FOER is the first and only official support group dedicated to the conservation and protection of Enchanted Rock and has received support from other Whole Earth Community Partners – Central Texas Mountaineers and Texas Parks & Wildlife and through community events like the Granite Gripper Climbing Competition.

Chaco Footwear is ‘Fit for Adventure.’ Their signature adjustable nylon sandals put Chaco on the map for outdoor enthusiasts around the world. Their popularity has grown through the years and styles now include casual footwear and shoes, which you can find at Whole Earth stores. So if you have been thinking about purchasing a new pair of Chacos, now is the time! You’ll have a great pair of shoes or sandals, and you’ll help keep Enchanted Rock a magical place, today and for generations to come.

Dansko Days Check Presentation

Dansko Days Check Presentation

Many, many thanks to all of our customers who bought Dansko shoes during Dansko Days for the Texas Land Conservancy at Whole Earth Provision Co. Your purchases will help TLC to protect those special places that make us proud to call Texas home. From left to right: Stephen Ramirez and Amber Arseneaux of TLC, Adam Schiffman of Dansko, and Jack Jones of Whole Earth.

Texas State Parks Check Presentation

Texas State Parks Check Presentation

We’re sending out a great big Texas Thank You to all of our customers who made donations during April is Texas State Park Month and to everyone who attended the Banff Mountain Film Festival and Radical Reels in Austin back in February. Today, we presented a check for $30,259 to Texas State Parks. This brings the five year total to $148,507! Thank you so much for supporting our Texas State Parks. From left to right Brent Leisure, Director of State Parks, Jack Jones of Whole Earth, Ralph Duggins, Vice Chairman of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission, Joe Jones of Whole Earth, Holland Jones of Whole Earth, Bert Peeples of Whole Earth and Carter Smith, Executive Director of Texas Parks and Wildlife.

Merrel Gives Back supports the Big Bend Conservancy!

Merrel Gives Back supports the Big Bend Conservancy!

Some places on Earth are so beautiful that one can only stand in wonder and gratitude before them. Big Bend National Park is a place of such beauty… a place where the spirit of the land inspires and nourishes the lives of all who walk there…a place of solitude, serenity, and reflection…a place that changes lives through exploration and adventure…a beautiful, coherent, and sublime place that must be protected.
– from the Big Bend Conservancy Vision Statement

Big Bend. The name conjures up vast landscapes filled with mountains, deserts, canyons and a great river. For generations, Texans have loved the place, and sharing Big Bend memories is a surefire way to cement lifelong friendships. The Big Bend Conservancy, formerly known as the Friends of Big Bend National Park, is an organization devoted to preserving the Park, enhancing educational opportunities, and providing hospitality for visitors. Whole Earth Provision Co. has had the pleasure of working with the group for many years, so we are proud to announce that Merrell will be sponsoring Merrell Gives Back in support of the Big Bend Conservancy.

From May 14th through May 31st, for each pair of Merrell Shoes purchased at Whole Earth, Merrell will donate five dollars to the Big Bend Conservancy. Merrell makes classic outdoor shoes. The company was founded in 1981 with the goal of providing high performance, affordable hiking boots. Today, their line includes shoes for hiking and trail running as well as everyday shoes, like the ever popular Moab and Jungle Mocs.

Fossil skull from Big Bend   NPS photo/ Big Bend National Park

Fossil skull from Big Bend NPS photo/ Big Bend National Park

The Big Bend Conservancy will be using the funds to prepare for their new Fossil Discovery Exhibit. The Park has over 1200 fossils including more than 30 Cretaceous era species as well as super crocodiles, T-rex and sabre tooth tigers. Opening in January 2017, the exhibit will focus specifically on the fossils of Big Bend and feature “The Boneyard,” Big Bend’s first ever dedicated children’s interpretive area.

We hope you’ll stop by your favorite Whole Earth store and check out our selection of Merrell shoes. You just may find the perfect shoe for everyday or on the trail, and your purchase will help support the Big Bend Conservancy.

Big Bend – photo by Emre Erdener

Big Bend – photo by Emre Erdener

Dansko Days benefitting the Texas Land Conservancy

Dansko Days benefitting the Texas Land Conservancy

May 6th – 15th
All Stores

In the past 10 years, Texas has lost a staggering 3,000,000 acres of open land to growth and development. Did you have a special place in the woods or along a creek where you played as a child? Does it still exist as you remember it? For many of us, the answer sadly is no. But, thanks to the Texas Land Conservancy, the answer for some is yes.

The Texas Land Conservancy was founded in 1982 by Ned Fritz, known as the father of Texas conservation. Responding to the encroachment of development on natural areas in Texas, Fritz decided that there was a need for a land trust that would take on the preservation of small but important properties that were not large enough to be saved by other organizations. Using conservation easements the Texas Land Conservancy has preserved the physical and ecological integrity of wildlife habitat, native plant communities and scenic landscapes across the state for the benefit of present and future generations of Texans.

The Ferguson Ranch in Gillespie County

The Ferguson Ranch in Gillespie County

Dansko, through their Texas area rep, has become a big supporter of the Texas Land Conservancy. For each pair of full price Dansko shoes sold at Whole Earth Provision Co. during Dansko Days, from May 6th through May 15th, our Dansko rep will donate $5 to the Texas Land Conservancy! Dansko Shoes are loved by folks who spend many hours of the day on their feet: teachers, nurses, sales clerks, chefs and their kitchen staff. Dansko shoes are comfortable and they have style. We hope you’ll stop by your favorite Whole Earth and take a look at our Dansko shoes. You’ll find so much more than a basic clog. You may find your new favorite pair of shoes, and you’ll be supporting the Texas Land Conservancy with your purchase.

Most of the property protected by the Texas Land Conservancy is not open to the public. Conservation easements limit development and provide for restoration and land management, but the land still remains in private hands. However, there are nine sites open to the public. Two are in major Texas cities: Oak Cliff Nature Preserve in Dallas and Cibolo Creek Preserve in San Antonio. Throughout the year, some of the other protected properties are open to the public. You can learn about these special days by signing for the group’s emails or social media posts on their website. The Texas Land Conservancy also has a great Instagram feed that celebrates Texas landscapes and wildlife.

Dansko Days Check Presentation

Dansko Days Check Presentation

A big thank you to all of our customers who purchased Dansko shoes during Dansko Days for the Texas Land Conservancy! We’ve had three Dansko Days for the TLC. Including the most recent one in November, the total funds raised now stands at $1500! From left to right: Rachael Garbowski of TLC, Jack Jones of Whole Earth Provision Co. and Adam Schiffman, our Dansko rep, whose generosity makes Dansko Days possible.

Coming Home – Giving Back Check Presentation

Coming Home – Giving Back Check Presentation

From left to right, Ted Siff and Joanna Wolaver of the Shoal Creek Conservancy, Jack Jones of Whole Earth Provision Co., and Vicki McCuistion of The Barnabas Connection

Coming Home – Giving Back Fund Drive a Success

Coming Home – Giving Back was the theme of Whole Earth Provision Co.’s grand reopening of its store on North Lamar in Austin. Coming Home reflects the almost five months that the store was closed for repairs and remodeling after the Memorial Day flood and our pleasure at being back home and open for business again on Lamar.

Giving Back was our way of helping those still in need. Many who suffered from the Memorial Day Weekend floods, especially in the Wimberley Valley, have yet to return home. Whole Earth set aside 10% of the sales of the first two weekends of the Lamar store’s Grand Reopening, accepted donations from our customers at all three Austin locations, and added in our own contribution, to help. The grand total of the combined donations was $10,326. The Barnabas Connection Flood Relief for Wimberley and the Shoal Creek Conservancy each received checks in the amount of $5,163.

Barnabas Connection

The Barnabas Connection is working in coordination with local and state officials to respond to the devastating rain and flooding that impacted the Wimberley Valley. They have assisted 287 local families, representing almost 600 people. In addition, their volunteers have worked hundreds if not thousands of hours assisting survivors at Bridges Gym and the Barnabas table at the FEMA DRC. The Barnabas Connection funds are designated for families in the Wimberley Valley and will be distributed through a case management process to help avoid duplication of efforts and to fully identify unmet needs.

Shoal Creek Conservancy

The Shoal Creek Conservancy was founded in 2013 to improve the Shoal Creek greenway, a trail shared by runners, commuters, nature watchers, dog walkers, volleyball players and residents all along the creek who enjoy its green oasis in the midst of the city. In recent years conditions around Shoal Creek have declined from overuse and eroding banks. The greenway is owned and managed by the City of Austin’s Parks and Recreation Department; however, there are currently no funds dedicated to the management of Shoal Creek. While the City does the best it can with limited resources, the Shoal Creek Conservancy and its volunteers provide additional, much-needed support.

We are deeply grateful to our customers for their generous support for the fund drive and hope that everyone in the Wimberley Valley who suffered from the Memorial Day Weekend floods will be able to return home soon.

Nepal Recovery Fund Drive – An Update

Nepal Recovery Fund Drive – An Update

Photo ~ Catherine Mahony / Oxfam

Nepal Recovery Fund Drive – An Update

During the month of May, Whole Earth customers generously donated over $17,700 to our Nepal Recovery Fund Drive. The money was given to Oxfam America and was one of the largest single donations that the group received for Nepal Relief. They recently sent us an update on their work in Nepal.

In the immediate aftermath of the earthquakes, Oxfam America’s first priority was getting basic, life-saving supplies to individuals and communities in need. And though the humanitarian situation has improved in Nepal, the provision of shelter, food, livelihood, water and sanitation remains paramount. The cold and damp monsoon weather left survivors even more vulnerable and made reaching those in remote areas a continuing challenge. With the approach of winter, the delivery of winterization kits to those living in the mountains is a key concern.

As Oxfam America transitions to the recovery phase, they are working in four key program areas: Shelter; Food and Livelihood; Gender; and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH).

Shelter

Surveys show that more than 600,000 houses were totally destroyed, and a further 290,000 were damaged in the earthquakes. Emergency shelter kits of tarpaulins and ropes and improved temporary shelter kits including corrugated galvanized iron sheets, roofing accessories and toolkits, were distributed. Oxfam partners provided training to carpenters, masons and local women to construct improved temporary shelters. Shelter awareness sessions also increased community knowledge of safe construction techniques.

Their priority was to provide a roof over families in need before the rainy season. Moving towards more permanent shelters and focusing on the approaching winter, Oxfam America is providing items to insulate shelters such as thermal floor mats and groundsheets, blankets, mattresses and hot water bottles, as well as sheeting to help waterproof shelters. Shelter for livestock and household granaries are also planned where needed.

Food and Livelihood

Oxfam America has been helping people recover their livelihoods by jump starting economic activities for individuals and communities. During the emergency phase of the response, there were distributions of staple food supplies, along with rice seeds and agricultural tools for farmers whose own supplies were lost or damaged in the earthquake. Cash for work programs also aided in debris clearance.

In the recovery phase, there will be more cash-based programs for livelihood recovery. These programs will focus in areas such as: trader grants to provide capital and training for people who want to restart or rehabilitate existing businesses (which in turn will also help to restart employment opportunities for wage-earners); the reconstruction and maintenance of community infrastructure; and support for market and financial systems.

Gender

Women, the elderly, people living with disabilities and female headed households are likely to find rebuilding their houses more challenging. In response, Oxfam America has been studying how their work affects vulnerable women and men, ensuring that they are not put at further risk, and have equal access to facilities and goods.

For women who have been displaced or otherwise affected by the earthquake, the organization has provided items and amenities aimed at ensuring their security and dignity, such as gender friendly hygiene kits, separate toilets for women, safe bathing spaces, and awareness raising activities to help women get relevant legal documents. In particular, these activities have been aimed at supporting single and elderly women, women with disabilities, pregnant women, and those at risk of domestic or gender based violence.

In the recovery phase, there is a focus on providing women with targeted support through counseling and referral services, reactivating and strengthening existing women’s groups, and empowering women through life skills training and activities to strengthen their ability to provide for themselves and their families.

Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH)

The earthquakes significantly reduced access to sanitation facilities and compromised access to safe, clean water. In order to reduce the risks of WASH-related diseases, and promote better community health, Oxfam America has been repairing and rehabilitating water sources and restoring access to potable water in hard-to-reach areas. Latrines have been constructed or repaired, and hygiene kits containing essential items have been distributed.

During the first phase of the emergency response, Oxfam teams sought to reach the most vulnerable and remote communities. They were able to set up strategic bases in areas that would be inaccessible during the monsoon season with local teams and contingency stocks. They are now working towards sustainable water and sanitation provision, including water rehabilitation in schools, and major repair and rehabilitation of damaged water supplies in the hill districts.

Again, we thank you for your generous support for the people of Nepal as they recover from the devastating earthquakes and rebuild their country.

Oxfam America