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It’s not dirt – Nutrients for Life

Posted by stephanie rogers on April 22, 2021 in News
Tamara Sealy, Class of '96
Tamara Sealy, Class of '96

You may be tempted to call it dirt. But its not -soil is so much more than dirt. In fact, soil is life’s main ingredient. Without it, life as we know it, on earth, wouldn’t even exist.

That’s why Tamara Sealy (Class of ’96) is so passionate about her work as executive director of Nutrients for Life Foundation Canada. Nutrients for Life is a registered charitable organization committed to bringing educational materials to the classroom, focusing on soil science and agricultural sustainability

“We need to keep educating and speaking positively about soil. I often ask students, after one of my presentations, to do me a favour – do not refer to soil as dirt.  Soil provides us with so much in our daily lives.  It is so much more than just dirt!”

Before the pandemic, Tamara travelled the country, attending teacher conventions, industry events and presenting in classrooms, discussing the importance of soil and plant science. She worked hands-on with students and teachers alike, opening their eyes to the complexity of soil.

“The one fact that amazes me most, that I always love to share, is that in one tablespoon of soil, there are more microorganisms in it than there are people on Earth,” says Tamara.

The importance of Tamara’s work and message has not changed, given the pandemic, just the way she delivers her programs.

“Currently, we are connecting with classrooms virtually and attending teacher conferences online,” she says. “Teachers and students have embraced this new way of classroom learning and are happy to have special guests attend their virtual classrooms.

“In addition to their workshops and virtual classroom visits, Nutrients for Life also provides “Learning Garden” grant programs. Through this program, staff members assist schools in getting their hands in soil and learning from the ground up, what it takes to grow your own food.

When speaking directly with students, Tamara always tells them she has the best job in the world, “I get to travel the country (pre-Covid) and talk about my passion!”

Agriculture is Tamara’s passion.

“I was encouraged by a high school teacher to pursue a career in agriculture, and I am so happy I did. I have worked for some great agri-businesses in Atlantic Canada in my career, and when the opportunity arose to help educate about agriculture, I jumped at the chance. I see the disconnect from agriculture in my friends, neighbors, and in my children’s friends. The majority of the population does not understand the science of producing food, fibre, and fuel.  Talking to students about the science of agriculture is important to me, and I hope that I can convey that importance to them so they have a better appreciation of what it takes to feed the world.” 

Tamara’s passion extends beyond her day job. When she’s not educating, Tamara works alongside her husband, Trevor, on the cow-calf operation, in Hopewell Hill, NB.

Learn more about Nutrients for Life