How It Works
From the construction of a geodesic greenhouse in the community Naujaat, Nunavut we strive to offer low cost, locally grown produce to the community. Due to the climate and infertile land in Nunavut, we designed a greenhouse, vertical hydroponic systems, hybrid raised dirt beds, all to be able to withstand the colder harsh climate. The greenhouse has a polycarbonate exterior, solar powered air system, and thermal mass storage that is able to maintain temperatures 30 degrees warmer, relative to the outside climate, entirely from sunlight. In the winter, we have to incorporate further measure to continue to grow.
Growing North - From the Beginning
In 2013, Growing North was founded by Stefany Nieto and Benjamin Canning. Both Stefany and Benjamin are avid social entrepreneurs, passionate about creating projects and initiatives to change the world for the better. With the support of the organization Enactus Ryerson, the two began researching issues faced in the North and landed on food security. Growing North today, can be viewed above!
With 63% of the community being under the age of 18 years old, a co-op program based on education intertwined with the greenhouse has been implemented for the community. By partnering with the local high school, students are able to gain course credit from volunteering in the greenhouse, along with a supplementary curriculum on horticulture, environment, and nutrition. Engaging students in the greenhouse project not only improves their chances of graduating but empowers them. Also, workshops and seminars are given to young mothers on health.
Arctic Farmers Program
Growing North has also created the Arctic Farmers program, in which we are able to train local people to manage the greenhouse systems. Once an individual has gone through the proper training, they are certified an Arctic Farmer and can pursue full time work as the Greenhouse Manager for a particular system in their community.
The Greenhouse Manager is responsible for all operations within the greenhouse to produce vegetables for the community. They are also responsible to for distribution of said food through three main avenues: Direct Sales to Consumers (Farmers Market), Direct Sales to Local Businesses or Food Bank.