PWRDF launches “Branches of Hope” at Synod ’23

Liana Gallant and Valerie Maier of the Diocesan PWRDF working group at a display table
L to R: Liana Gallant and Valerie Maier of the Diocesan PWRDF working group at a display table set up at Synod.
By on November 20, 2023

Was the Primate’s World Relief and Development Fund (PWRDF) Working Group operating a little pre-Christmas tree lot at Synod?  Such was not the case! Those four little white spruce seedlings helped to launch Branches of Hope, a diocese-wide project with its roots in the Communion Forest, a global initiative of the world-wide Anglican Communion. This international initiative includes local activities of forest protection, tree-growing and ecosystem restoration, all with the focus and aim to protect creation.

In the diocese of Ottawa, a donation to Branches of Hope results in a tree planted here and another in Uganda where PWRDF partner, Josephine Kizza, demonstrates and teaches agroecology—good and healthy farming practices. Branches of Hope offers an opportunity for all of us to engage in environmental “repair” through purchasing and planting trees in and around parishes of the diocese. These “forests” will differ from place to place: some trees may appear on private or church properties; others in forested areas; some in grasslands; and others in wetlands. The possibilities are endless.

Think creatively. Do you live in an apartment or condo? Why not give a seedling as a gift to a grandchild or to a couple as a wedding gift? Seedlings might also commemorate a graduation, anniversary or other special occasion.

And what of the seedlings that appeared at Synod? All four (including the one Terry Dillabough is holding in the picture) went home to parishes of the diocese. In the meantime, we are in the process of contacting all parishes so that orders may be placed and seedlings distributed in time for spring plantings.

For further information about Branches of Hope or to place an order: please contact the Ven. Patrick Stephens by email: [email protected] or by phone at 613-870-1440.

Terry Dillabaugh from St John the Evangelist Smiths Falls visited our Branches of Hope /PWRDF booth at Synod and took a little white spruce back to his parish.


  • Janet Allingham

    Janet Allingham is a member of the diocesan Primate's World Relief and Development Fund working group.

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