House of Friendship

Silver Pledging Partner

House of Friendship logo

Reduction commitment: 40% reduction commitment from 2010 (intensity/square footage)

Business Type: Not For Profit/Charity

House of Friendship is a charitable social service agency that annually serves over 42,000 women, men, youth and children living on low income. Our program areas focus on: Supporting Healthy Lives (Addiction Services); Feeding and Assisting Those In Need (Community Services); Building Strong Families and Strong Communities (Family Services);and, Providing Shelter and Supportive Housing (Residential Services).

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Notable GHG Reduction and Sustainability Projects: 


Hot Water Generation Update: Replaced 3, 80-gallon tank water heaters with a high efficiency boiler.  The cost of the boiler was $15,000 with an estimated payback period of 7 years. Two of the replaced 80 gallon tank water heaters were then used to replace 4, 40-gallon tank electric water heaters.


Lighting upgrades: Upgraded from T-12 to T-8 at 3 story apartment buildings and at homeless shelters. This will create roughly $2,500 and $2,000 a year in estimated cost savings respectively.


Apartment Building Re-Lamping Upgrade: Complete upgrade of all common space and site lighting. This project is estimated to have annual energy savings of 40,000KW per year.

Fleet Review: Following a review of the organization’s travel requirements it was decided that they should reduce the total number of vehicles in service and upgrade to a few sustainable efficient vehicles instead.

HVAC control Upgrade: Installation of improved heating controls for MAU (Makeup Air Unit). This project is estimated to have 4000/m3 per year reduction in NG consumption.


Renewable Energy: Installed a 10 kW solar rooftop system.

Sweater Day: Held a Sweater Day to reduce office temperatures and stay cozy.


Geothermal Heating for 75 Charles Street Building: Geothermal provides the heating for the forced-air system in the vertical wells under the parking lot.

Emissions: House of Friendship began tracking their GHG emissions in 2010. The graph below displays their emissions data thus far.

 Sustainability Culture:

House of Friendship has a Green Team with a bottom-up philosophy. Anyone is welcome to join and everyone’s ideas are explored and treated with the same level of importance. This team meets monthly, and each meeting is full of passionate discussions with members concerned about the environment.


Sustainability Goals:

  1. Leading the community in terms of improving the organization’s environmental impact and creating a progressive workplace where people want to be
  2. Implementing sustainability initiatives that help manage the bottom line
  3. Improving operations so they are being as least wasteful as possible
  4. Developing a GHG inventory baseline
  5. Improve overall employee engagement in reducing environmental impact
  6. Continue re-lamping projects at various facilities and upgrading laundry equipment at residential sites
  7. Implement fuel switching for sites using electric water heaters and baseboards
  8. Export solar pre-heat options for water heating and drain waste heat recovery systems at residential sites



House of Friendship has been successful at upgrading laundry equipment at residential sites, as well as, fuel switching for sites using electric water heaters, exploring solar pre-heat options for water heating and draining waste heat recovery systems at residential sites.

House of Friendship has been working to transition all of their print materials to 100% recycled material, wherever possible eliminating the printed version and moving to an electronic format. They work with local suppliers to reduce the amount of long distance shipping they rely on. They have drastically reduced their use of salt and have moved towards an ice melt product, which uses Calcium Magnesium Acetate instead of Sodium Chloride. They are also big supporters of community gardens; there is a community garden present at each of their community centers.


House of Friendship

Member Profile Video:

SWR 2013 Report – House of Friendship Video


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