Guest post: Green Wish announced at Edmonton Expo

– By Karen Lee

Edmonton’s Green Wish chapter is still in its early stages, but it got a big boost during the last weekend in September, at the Edmonton Expo with actor Raphael Sbarge.

Founded by Sbarge (Once Upon a Time, Prison Break and Mass Effect) in 2009, the goal of the grassroots, non-profit organization is to make it easy for people to get involved in their community, while funding and supporting local environmental organizations.

Local paralegal Elizabeth Richardson is still setting the groundwork to get Green Wish up and running in Edmonton. Each Green Wish chapter raises funds for six or seven local non-profits with an environmental focus; after 24 months board members of each chapter choose a new group of non-profits to support.

Green Wish works with local retailers, where, when a customer walks into a participating location, shops will have a Green Wish card displayed with the option of donating $1, $3 or $5. Green Wish collects the money quarterly and distributes the funds accordingly.

Best of all, Green Wish supporters will know exactly where their money is going. The names and websites of the selected local non-profits are listed at the back of the Green Wish Cards. Ninety cents of every dollar goes directly into the local non-profit.

The infrastructure that Green Wish already has in place is intended to make it easy for the receiving non-profits to fundraise, providing an awareness platform for the individual causes.

Raphael Sbarge
Raphael Sbarge at the Edmonton Expo in September 2014. Photo: Karen Lee

Another unexpected benefit of Green Wish, as Sbarge has found, is that non-profits can work together as partners with a common goal of making the world a greener place to live, rather than competing with one another to raise funds.

Sbarge said he hopes to inspire others to take action to make the world a greener place to live, even if it’s seemingly small. He said he believes that every action matters when it comes to putting forth positive change into the world.

Asked if he had one wish, what would that be? He said he wishes people, especially those in industrialized nations, will stop debating whether climate change exists and start taking action to solve the problem.

If you would like to get involved with Green Wish Edmonton as a board member or general volunteer, head to and fill out the form or like their Facebook page.

Karen Lee was born and raised in Edmonton. She enjoys meeting new people, especially community-minded folks, just like yourself! She also loves photography, arts, DIY projects, baking, recycling and making the world a better place to live. You can follow her on Twitter at @RASweetness. *2013 blog team member