October 17-24 marked Small Business Week in Canada, and we here at Valley Waste & Recycling took some time to both reflect and celebrate. It was a great opportunity to look back on our past work, while still looking ahead to a very bright future.
It’s no secret that the last year-and-a-half of pandemic life has been tough on so many of us, and small business owners and entrepreneurs were certainly not spared its economic impact.
Here in Canada, small businesses drive our economy. Your local coffee shops, your independent bookstores, and yes, your waste management providers—these all create jobs and shared prosperity. Small businesses made up 98.0% of all employer businesses in Canada in 2020, employing 9.7 million individuals in Canada—approximately 64 percent (two-thirds— !) of the country’s total labour force. Right here in British Columbia, we’ve got 187,252 small businesses—tops in all Western Canada!
Our own journey to small business success started in 2001. When we, John and Sandra, bought Valley Waste & Recycling, it was a small operation with just three employees. Over these 20 years, thanks to family, friends and employees who helped get us here and our customers who backed us, we’ve expanded the services we offer and expanded operations to over 70 employees. We are proud to work hard on behalf of so many here in the Fraser Valley.
Waste management is a small but growing industry, with demand in the public and private sectors providing full-time employment for more than 35,000 people across Canada. (We’re hiring too, so please feel free to check out our openings here!) We know how fortunate we are to be part of such an exciting and growing sector, and we have worked hard to keep our small, family-friendly culture in place.
We have also worked for years supporting local charities and initiatives, seeking to make a difference in people’s lives. Be it through volunteering, offering up the use of our trucks and machinery, or by raising donations, we have been lucky enough to support the BC Wildlife Federation, BC Children’s Hospital, the UFV Cascades and Bowls of Hope, to name just a few.
You see, our small business isn’t just portable toilets and septic tanks, waste collection or recycling programs. Here at Valley Waste & Recycling, we are in the business of community—and business is good!