Environmental impact and education is at the heart of many Community & Recreation initiatives.

We encourage all residents to do their part to make Charles Street Family Housing a green place to live.

U of T has a long history of embracing change towards reducing our community’s negative impact on the environment.



Community & Recreation, under the first coordinator, Ellen Giles, initiated and developed the recycling program at Charles Street as we know it today. We continue today to make improvement in the program in cooperation with the City of Toronto.

  • Recycling bins are located on each floor adjacent to the elevators.
  • Your laundry room has receptacles for special recycling items that are recycled by U of T after periodic deliveries of our accumulated items.
  • There is also a food waste bin in each unit.

Recycling Tips

  • Cut back on plastic bags is always a good idea, even if they are recyclable. Go reusable and keep it in your purse or bag each day.
  • Reuse containers as much as possible before recycling them.
  • Styrofoam is now recyclable.
  • Always use both sides of paper. This will cut your lifetime use of paper in half!
  • Recycle toilet paper rolls.
  • Clean your recyclables – yes, that includes pizza boxes.
  • Use mugs and cups instead of disposable drinkware.
  • Use cloths instead of paper towel.
  • Don’t use batteries. If necessary, go rechargable!
  • Recycle batteries – it’s the law in many areas.
  • Boycott products with heavy packaging.
  • Recycle plastic bottles and containers with the lid on tight.
  • Use re-usable bags. By owning just a few re-usable bags you can save money and reduce waste.
  • Lug a Mug! By using your own cup at a coffee shop on campus instead of using one of their paper cups to save a tree and 25 cents per coffee!

While this is just a short little list you can always surf the web for even more. Thanks for making our community a green one!

Enviro Links:

Eco Family Fair & Other Programs

  • The Eco Family Fair is an on-site afternoon interactive convention that takes place every Fall with fun learning opportunities for children and adults. Check out the Eco Family Fair and other Special Events.
  • Community & Recreation celebrates Spring each year with the Annual Residents Garden Party . With chances to do some planting and see the plants spring to life, this event is always exciting.
  • We offer children’s programming each summer that educates through fun activities and exploration. Two such programs are the Great Garden Adventure and the trip to Toronto’s Riverdale Farm.

The FreeStore

Started by the Tenant’s Association, and now operated by Community & Recreation, the FreeStore is a fantastic resource for residents. Those moving-in or moving-out will find it especially useful.

The Ellen Giles Garden

Completed in 2004, this rooftop garden at 30 Charles was a dream realized after many many years of planning and fundraising.