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Celebrating 10 Years with TD Friends of the Environment Foundation

When ReForest London got its start in 2005, TD Friends of the Environment Foundation (TD FEF) was one of the first organizations to step forward with significant financial support.

“ReForest London community tree planting projects clearly fit with TD FEF’s focus on trees as the best means to create healthy and vibrant urban green spaces,” said Yvette Scrivener, Regional Manager, TD Friends of Environment Foundation.

TD Friends of the Environment has funded 39 ReForest London projects over the past 10 years.  Most have been tree planting projects in London parks or schoolyards. In total, over 9,700 native trees and shrubs have been planted with TDFEF’s funding.  Almost 4,000 volunteers have participated in these projects. In total, ReForest London has naturalized 5.4 hectares with TDFEF funding, an area nearly the size of Victoria Park!

TD Friends of the Environment Foundation is celebrating its own anniversary this year – 25 years. Before establishing the Foundation, TD asked its customers and employees what they value, and the environment was consistently identified as very important. Over the past 25 years, the Foundation has invested $70 million in environmental initiatives in Canada, with $3 million granted to London. Its focus is to support grass roots, charitable environmental projects that focus on urban greening, environmental education, and energy conservation.

TD FEF is primarily funded by TD customers, but all administrative costs are borne by TD, so 100% of the charitable donations given by customers go directly to projects in their community. Funding decisions are made by a volunteer, local advisory board.

In fact, ReForest London’s outgoing Board Chair, Mitch Schurmans, commented that long before he became a board member with ReForest London, he occupied the then Chapter Secretary role for southwestern Ontario Chapter for the Canada Trust Friends of the Environment Foundation. 

 “The ongoing support of TD Friends of the Environment has been an important part of our success and our growth,” said Mitch. “Their commitment to improving the environment in London is a real legacy for TD in our community.”

Six years ago, TD FEF initiated TD Tree Days. Each year, TD employees, their families, and other community volunteers gather at urban parks across Canada and plant 50,000 trees. This year in London, 300 volunteers planted more than 2,000 trees. 

Of course, all these trees bring us closer to the community goal of a million trees in London. TD FEF has been a Partner in London’s Million Tree Challenge since the start of the campaign in 2011.

“It is our hope that people who plant the trees, revisit the trees to ensure their long term survival and success,” explained Yvette. “We hope to affect people’s stewardship values through their participation in tree planting in their own communities.”

TD Friends of the Environment has invested in London’s future. ReForest London is proud to be part of that investment into a greener, more sustainable city.

River Forks Park, one of the first projects supported by TD Friends of the Environment Foundation, planted in 2005 The same project at River Forks Park in 2015