Our Programs

The Alberta Emerald Foundation strives to inspire Albertans to positive environmental action.

In addition to the Emerald Awards, our programming includes Emerald Days, the
Youth Environmental Engagement Grants, and our Sharing Stories communications initiative.



Emerald Day community events visit cities and towns across Alberta to share environmental success stories and to discuss the opportunities and challenges in each region. Thanks to funding partners from the hosting community, Emerald Day events are free-of-charge for all participants and guests.



  • EMERALD SPEAKERS SERIES: Presentations by Emerald Award recipients and finalists.
  • ECOPITCH: An opportunity for youth to present their environmental dream project to a panel of judges for the chance to win $1,000 to help make it a reality.
  • Success story displays hosted by local organizations, businesses, governments and schools.
  • Networking and connecting opportunities
  • Family movie night
  • and more!


The Alberta Emerald Foundation believes in inspiring the next generation of eco-heroes by supporting Alberta’s young people (aged 25 and under) in their environmental efforts. With funds from founding program sponsors, and other sponsors and individual donors, the Alberta Emerald Foundation provides micro-grants of up to $500 to youth-led and youth-targeted environmental projects and initiatives. The Alberta Emerald Foundation intends to allocate over 100 Youth Environmental Engagement Grants each year.



Special thanks to this year’s program sponsors:





To assist with the costs associated with environmental engagement activities, schools, classrooms, and community groups are invited to apply for a micro-grant of up to $500.

Applications can be submitted in the following categories:

Green builders

For the development of new green spaces, or the enhancement and improvement of existing ones. Includes community gardens, outdoor classrooms, and urban naturalization projects.

green scholars

For educational experiences that result in environmental learning, inspiration, and personal/professional development. Includes presentations, experiments, field trips.

green energizers (presented by altalink)

For the initiation of renewable energy or energy conservation projects, or the enhancement and improvement of existing ones.

green guardians (presented by ABCRC)

For the protection and/or restoration and/or maintenance of natural habitats and areas. Also for the creation of new recycling or composting programs, or the enhancement and improvement of existing ones.


Please Note:

  • There are two annual granting periods: August – December, and January – June. 
  • Successful applicants will receive a first cheque of (up to) $300. A second cheque of $200 will be issued once the Alberta Emerald Foundation receives a follow-up report about the project. Follow-up reports must be received within three months of the project start date.
  • Only group projects will be considered.  The project or initiative must be led by, or targeted to individuals who are aged 25 years and under.
  • Grant applications will be reviewed monthly.  Funds will be allocated to those projects that best support the goals of the Youth Environmental Engagement Grant program.
  • Grants will only be distributed to future projects, and cannot be backdated. 
  • A maximum of two grants will be issued to each school/organization per year. Applicants may submit their second proposal once their follow-up report from their first project has been received and approved by the Alberta Emerald Foundation. 

We recently updated our granting system. Click the button to submit your Youth Environmental Engagement Grant application and follow-up report.


The Ron kruhlak award

Mr. Kruhlak’s astonishing 26-year contribution to the AEF continues through this special $1,000 grant, which is awarded to one of the past year’s leading Youth Environmental Engagement Grant recipients to help further their work.

A025_C075_0124R6Lacombe Composite high school ecovision
bee wise

2017 Ron kruhlak award recipient

Earlier this year, forty EcoVision members transformed 800 square feet of their schoolyard into a pollinator garden with annuals, perennials, and natural flower plants in the shape of their school’s initials (LCHS). They then built a fenced-in area to protect their bees. And finally, they purchased two beehives, extracting equipment, protective clothing, and starter bees for their hives.

The pollinator gardens provide food for their bees and other pollinators. The bees, in turn, help with the growth of their 125 fruit trees, 40 raised bed, and other gardens, as well as providing honey for the school and community. The gardens and the beehives provide hands-on learning opportunities for the students and community members.

Placing beehives in a chemical-free garden provides a safe place for bees to thrive, contributing to the bees re-establishment, which are currently on the decline.

The team requested funding from the AEF’s Youth Environmental Engagement Grant Program to purchase supplies for both the bees and the pollinator garden. The garden benefits the entire student body, providing a green space for over 850 youth. Since the project, five EcoVision students started their Bee Keeping Certificate Course, and have started researching honey bees.


From PSAs and editorial stories about our Emerald Award finalists to social media engagement on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, and the Emerald Speakers Series, the Alberta Emerald Foundation shares environmental good news stories with Albertans.

new for 2016-17:

Emerald Speakers Series

This series provides a platform for Emerald Awards recipients and finalists to share an inspiring environmental talk about their work and their journey to achieving their successes. The series is presented live throughout the province and is also made available online via our website and social media platforms.

Interested in booking one of our speakers for your event? Contact us at info@emeraldfoundation.ca.

The Green Medium’s EcoHero Blog Series

The Green Medium is an Emerald Award-winning youth-run blog that seeks to innovate how we discuss and inform ourselves on environmental concerns. The AEF is pleased to present a 22 blog series crafted by the young writers over 2017-18 inspired by our past Emerald Award recipients and finalists. Catch the series at thegreenmedium.com.



For more information about our communications efforts, please contact:

Gregory Caswell
Communications and Outreach Manager
Ph: 780.905.0390
Email: gregory@emeraldfoundation.ca

Join our social network:   Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Youtube