What to do this Earth Day?

By Andrea Lucy, Experiential Learning Program Lead

Hip hip hooray for Earth Day! On April 22nd, over 1,000,000,000 people around the world will take action to protect the planet. This 52nd annual Earth Day is a reminder to treat the planet with respect, kindness, and care for our current and future communities.

There are many ways to participate in Earth Day (and every day) digitally and in-person:

Great Worldwide Cleanup

Like Hansel and Gretel, humans leave a trail of breadcrumbs in the form of trash. It’s a very material reminder of our collective impact on the planet. All around the world, neighbours get together on Earth Day to clean up beaches, parks, rivers, and more. Or, try “plogging”, the popular new exercise started in Sweden of picking up trash while you jog. Bonus: you help clean up plastic pollution. Double Bonus: you get added stretching and strengthening.

Cleanups Near You


Restore Our Earth Lessons

Calling all teachers: Learn about restoring our earth while restoring our hope! This is a great learning resource created by the Earth Day Network covering, five opportunities for restoration over five days. The lessons include the topics: ecosystem services, carbon cycle, food sustainability, ecosystem restoration, and civic engagement. There are activity suggestions for elementary and secondary grades.

Restore Our Earth Education Lessons


Letters to the Earth

What world are you dreaming of for your future? What are your fears and hopes? Letters to the Earth offers community and education toolkits to create your letter in whatever way feels powerful to you, then share it with those who need to listen. Their education toolkit includes prompts, science experiments and drama activities to help classes get started. Send your letters out in a letter-writing campaign to politicians to let them know why they should care, what you want (like a wishlist), and what they should do now. 

Letters to the Earth Toolkit

Celebrate with Food, Art & Activities

Celebrate Earth Day with experiential activities created by Fresh Roots. Try our famous salad dressing, learn how food and climate change are connected, contribute to scientific research, and create art with food waste.

Fresh Roots Earth Day Activities & Recipes

Feel Empowered by Soil

It’s stressful and scary to learn about and experience climate change. Looking for a shimmer of hope? Some of us at Fresh Roots have been learning more about sustainable agriculture practices that care for the soil ecosystem. The neat added benefit? Healthy soil sequesters (removes) carbon dioxide from the air and stores it. Scientists estimate that if more farmers care for their soils with sustainable practices, climate change can actually be reversed. Care for the soil, and it will care for you!

Soil Carbon video by Soil Food Web School

What are you doing to celebrate Earth Day today and every day?



Food For the Rest of Us – Screening & Conversation


Event Information

Join the Vancouver Neighbourhood Food Networks and Fresh Roots for a screening of the documentary Food For The Rest of Us and a panel discussion.

  • Film screening – available to view from April 25th to May 1st
  • Panel Discussion Event – Decolonizing Urban Foodscapes – Thursday, April 28th 7:00 – 8:30pm

This film follows four unique individuals leading the way to a sustainable, equitable, and innovative food system; an Indigenous-owned, youth-run organic farm in Hawaii, and Black urban grower in Kansas City who runs a land farm at East High School, a female Kosher Butcher in Colorado working with the Queer Community and an Inuit community on the Arctic Coast who are adapting to climate change with a community garden in a small geodesic dome.

Donations gratefully accepted (tax receipts issued for donations $10 and over). All proceeds from this virtual event will fund the screening and panelist honorariums in addition to supporting the work of Fresh Roots and the Vancouver Food Network.

Door prizes to be drawn during the April 28th panel discussion generously sponsored by Ubuntu Canteen!

Once purchasing a ticket you will be provided with:

  • A unique link for viewing the documentary (available for 7 days between April 25th and May 1) from the comfort of your home
  • Zoom link to the panel on April 28th, 7:00 – 8:30 pm with film participant Maurice (Eric) Person in addition to Melissa West Morrison, Ga’axsta’las 琪琪, Senaqwila Wyss, & Alisha Lettman


Maurice (Eric) Person

Maurice is a Black-Indigenous farmer who was born and raised in Oathe, Kansas. His grandmother was a Choctaw-Kickapoo woman and his grandfather was a share crop farmer. Under the guidance of his grandparents, he learned about the intense healing that can happen when you get your hands in the dirt and grow your own food. He now lives in Atlanta, GA and works with Community Movement Builders, a not-for-profit to support food sovereignty and food sustainability. He loves to introduce new plants and food to people and his mission is to empower black youth to return to their roots, honour what was forgotten and stolen, and help people reconnect to the land. He believes that by decolonizing our minds and diets, we can be truly on the path to health and healing.

Melissa West Morrison|| Ga’axsta’las || 琪琪 ||

Melissa has one foot in Cedar and another in Bamboo. She is ‘Namgis and Chinese. Passionate about growing culturally relevant food and making medicines, Melissa is a plant alchemista in training and on a life-long journey of learning the language of plants. Melissa facilitates intergenerational land-based educational programming and community-based research projects related to Indigenous food security while increasing knowledge of and access to traditional plants and foods.

She is a community artist, UBC alumni and recent graduate of the Tsawwassen First Nation Farm School. Melissa has also recently embarked on learning her ancestral language of Kwak̓wala at North Island College and is enrolled in a Family Food Security Course.

Senaqwila Wyss

Senaqwila is Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation), Tsimshian, Sto:lo, Hawaiian and Swiss. She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in the faculty of Communications, Arts and Technology, minor in First Nations Studies. She also holds a First Nations Languages Proficiency Certificate and Diploma in the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Sníchim.

She and her husband, Lil̓wat filmmaker Justin Leo, are raising their 5year old daughter, and adopted her 10year old niece, to be first language speakers, which has not been done in her family for generations after colonial impacts. She practices ethnobotany with traditionally trained mom Cease Wyss with indigenous plant medicines. Senaqwila was raised learning these ancestral teachings and uses plants as teas, medicines, tinctures and ceremony.

Alisha Lettman

Alisha Lettman (she/they) is a Jamaican-Sindhi artist, plant lover, and educator. She started the Legacy Growers Collective in 2020 to stewards cultural foods & medicines of the African Diaspora & facilitate land-based learning. Presently, she teaches with ARC Community School. She specializes in place-based learning and uses artistic practice & cultural and historical knowledge to ignite belonging, compassion, creativity, and interdependence In youth.

In 2021 she completed her Bachelors in Leadership & Social Change from the University of British Columbia. As a lifelong learner herself, she also has professional experience in Hindustānī music, massage therapy & traditional herbal medicine.