8 Things We Are Grateful For in 2015

As Thanksgiving approaches, we wanted to take the time to highlight what we’re grateful for this holiday. This past year has been filled with amazing opportunities and even more amazing people.

Here are eight things we at GNVCompost are grateful for this Thanksgiving:

  1. Moving into Launchpad at Infinity Hall. In August, the GNVCompost team began working at Launchpad at Infinity Hall, a co-working office space for entrepreneurs and change-makers. Launchpad allows us to experience a sense of community in the work environment as we network with other startups. A big thanks especially are due to the co-founders of Launchpad, Quang Tran and Payal Khurana.
  2. Bonnaroo 2015. Last summer we got the chance to volunteer with We Are Neutral at Bonnaroo, helping them to promote their carbon offsetting program. When volunteering, we had the opportunity to meet Quang and Payal and much of the Launchpad crew. This networking was pivotal in leading to our involvement at Launchpad, so thanks We Are Neutral!
  3. Our team. The GNVCompost team has expanded in the last couple of years. We are so thankful for Jesse Williams, Shane Stukel, Kelley Antoniazzi-Taksier, David Flores, Krissy Olson, and our Innovation Academy interns Brad Pace, Matt Gallagher, and Nhama Azani.
  4. Receiving the Purpose 20 Award. In April, Business In The Heart Of Florida Magazine honored us with the Purpose 20 Award. We are thankful for this honor and to be recognized as an important part of Gainesville’s business community.

    We won the Purpose 20 award along with our partners Tempo Bistro to Go, My Yoga Connection, and Parisleaf (pictured, posing at the awards ceremony with our founder Chris).

  5. Community Composting going mainstream. Locally, we’ve broadened our memberships to a wider scope of the community, including Phi Delta Theta fraternity, Faith Vietnamese restaurant, Pi Beta Phi sorority, and many others across the Gainesville network in the last year. Furthermore, the 2016 US Composting Conference will host nearly 50 community composters with scholarships granted by the Institute for Local Self Reliance. This will be an unprecedented event for both community and large scale composters at this decades-old national conference. Lastly, the Compost Pedallers’ crowd-funding campaign and its success thus far is proving the demand for community composting initiatives across the nation is alive and well!

    We never imagined that community composting would grow as it has since we started the first 100% bike-powered community composting network back in 2011.

  6. Raw Sun Power and Compost Confessions. This year, we launched a video web series with Sun Power Lawn Care. Our founder, Chris, meets with Tom Snogles regularly to film Compost Confessions and Raw Sun Power, two shows about the experience of social entrepreneurship in Gainesville, Florida. Chris and Tom discuss the value of having an accountability partner in the pursuit of worthy goals. Watch the pilot episode of Compost Confessions here:

  7. Our community. In Gainesville, we are fortunate to have a strong network of organizations and businesses that work hard to provide consumers with fresh, locally grown food as well as educating the public on sustainability.

    For example:

    Forage Farm is at the center of local food education and inspiration where their mission is to encourage the value of health in the form of food, land and community. Forage leads the farm-to-school program at Loften High School in East Gainesville, organizes a local seed bank, and manages the popular Facebook group, Grow Gainesville!

    We recently learned about Vivek who is starting a new local food business. Farm Fresh Florida is a new service that delivers fresh, local and organic produce right to your front door, making healthy food even more accessible to people in Gainesville. 

    With the help of organizations like these, we are able to create a self-sustaining, harmonious cycle that GNV Compost can complete through compost. By turning food scraps into nutritious compost that grows new produce, we bring the entire food system together.

  8. YOU! Last, but certainly not least, we are grateful for the people that keep this wonderful community thriving. Without your support and dedication to sustainability, we would not have accomplished all that we have.

    So thanks, to all of you: to our composting members, to our community partner sites, to our team and, of course, to our Mother Earth.

Happy Thanksgiving!

To learn more about bike-powered food waste diversion in Gainesville, FL, click here.

Thanks for reading,
Gretchen Berisford

About the Author

Gretchen Berisford is a Philosophy and Sustainability senior at the University of Florida. She has cultivated a passion for growing food through studying Organic & Sustainable Crop Production and volunteering at Gainesville's Siembra Farm. Gretchen is Content Manager at Gainesville Compost.