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 events introduce our past Emerald Award recipients to young people around our province to encourage and inspire the next generation of EcoHeroes. Best of all, thanks to the support of our sponsors, EMERALD DAY is FREE of CHARGE to attend!




  • 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.

Presented in part by





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 

For the initiation of renewable energy or energy conservation projects, or the enhancement and improvement of existing ones. One exemplary recipient receives additional funding through the Energy Efficiency Champion Award, presented at the Emerald Awards.

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. The 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. 

having successfully distributed all of our grants this year, the youth environmental engagement grant program is currently closed. we will reopen for submissions in early august 2019.

click on the button below to submit your follow-up report.



The Ron kruhlak award


Mr. Kruhlak’s astonishing 28-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.


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Zero Waste Hot Lunch Program – Davidson Creek Elementary School – SHERWOOD PARK

2019 Ron kruhlak award recipient

With the help of the Ron Kruhlak Award, the students at Davidson Creek Elementary School are going above and beyond with their Zero Waste Hot Lunch program. The grant will allow them to not only bring in compostable and reusable products, but to raise awareness about the importance of making the global switch to reduce waste.

The Zero Waste Hot Lunch program is run by student and parent volunteers. Together, they select vendors for hot lunch days that commit to using clamshells and compostable hot bowls instead of styrofoam or plastic. In support of the cause and program, one vendor even decided to make the switch to sustainable packaging for their products! The students are dedicated to creating an environmental legacy and example that will continue to inspire eco-friendly programs in schools.

The Davidson Creek Elementary School students’ commitment to educate and establish sustainable efforts as the social norm makes them an exemplary recipient of the Ron Kruhlak Award. Their efforts to elevate environmental action and educate within their school and others makes us proud to call them EcoHeroes!

the energy efficiency champion award

presented by Energy Efficiency Alberta

After reviewing this year’s Youth Environmental Engagement Grant recipients, Energy Efficiency Alberta has selected an exemplary one to receive an additional $1,000 to continue their work with renewable energy.

Eco Classroom 11

Eco Classroom – New Myrnam School – Myrnam

2019 energy efficiency champion award recipient

Through access to a Youth Environmental Engagement Grant, New Myrnam School was able to design and construct their ‘Eco Classroom’, an outdoor learning space used by students, staff, and community members to learn more about the natural environment. Their goal is to develop their understanding of how we can reduce our carbon footprint through renewable energy systems.

Students in Grades 4 to 12 are working in three teams, Team Solar, Team Wind, and Team Biofuel. Each team works together to research and develop their assigned energy system for implementation into the Eco Classroom. The students will analyze the efficiency and effectiveness of the solar array, wind turbine, and biofuel generator, taking environmental and other factors into account. In addition, New Myrnam students are analyzing the amount of energy being used in their Career and Technology Education Centre using eGauge energy monitors.

The dedication to research and analysis of renewable energy systems done by the students at New Myrnam School make them commendable recipients of the Energy Efficiency Champion Award. By applying principles learned in math, science, construction, and environmental studies, these eco heros are inspiring others through their commitment to reducing their community’s carbon footprint!



From PSAs and editorial stories about our Emerald Award recipients 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

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