This blog post was written by Jodi Joy, Director of Development
I enjoyed the loveliest Mother’s Day yet this year, planting a tree in my garden with my children. Spending time outside sharing my love of nature is something I try to do with my children as often as possible. I believe it is a natural thing to do – sharing similar joys and blessings that shaped who I am today.
Connecting with nature has always helped me better balance all the stressful or demanding things in our lives and recent research shows this is not just intuitive but based on science too! One woman who understood this long before any of us was Mabel Frances Whittemore.
Mabel Frances was a teacher who loved sharing her knowledge and love of nature with children on nature walks and other fun activities in her spare time. She cared so much about connecting kids with nature that her work ultimately led to the publishing of a popular children’s nature magazine, and junior naturalists clubs reaching thousands of children all across Canada. Her initiative and passion were the seeds that led to the founding of our own organization, Nature Canada.
It is in Mabel’s honour that we created our Women for Nature Initiative to celebrate the initiative and positive solutions of diverse women from all across Canada. She strongly believed, as we do today, that the future of our natural world depends on connecting more Canadians today to the wonders of nature.
It is our hope to celebrate seventy-five such “Women for Nature” to match our milestone of the 75th anniversary this September. I am amazed by the women I have met through this journey especially because of their passion and commitment. Whether through academia, law, finance, policy, arts, media, each of them are striving to influence, inspire, educate and engage more Canadians about the importance of nature in our daily lives and encourage the various ways to enjoy nature.
Our Women for Nature Initiative has already brought together amazing leaders like Senators Janis Johnson and Nancy Greene Raine alongside authors such as Margaret Atwood and Sharon Butala, professors such as Professor Ann Dale and Dr. Brenda McCabe and businesswomen such as Dr. Sonia Labatt and Elizabeth Dowdeswell. These women have come together with their fellow members of Women for Nature to demonstrate their deep commitment to nature and to act as role models for others to drive change.
I’d like to share inspiring thoughts from these amazing women:
“When you start thinking about nature, you’re really thinking about the future, because that’s what the future is going to depend on, that’s what our children are going to depend on, and in fact that’s what all our economic wealth is going to depend on.” -Elizabeth Dowdeswell
“I joined Women for Nature because I really think that getting out into nature is so special, more Canadians should do it, all Canadian children should spend time in nature and women are the secret to getting kids out into nature.” -Senator Nancy Greene Raine
Today, I’m thrilled to announce a new addition to the team Today, I’m thrilled to announce a new addition to the team of women: Andrea Goertz. In addition to being the Senior Vice President, Strategic Initiatives, Chief Communications & Sustainability Officer for TELUS, Andrea personally believes in the value of doing good work in the community and the importance of connecting kids with nature.
Andrea believes “protecting the environment is important to me – personally and professionally. As a mother, I want my kids to connect with nature; to learn, grow and aspire to be strong stewards of our environment for future generations. As a TELUS team member, we put sustainability at the heart of everything we do. I think this is a great opportunity to empower our youth and make a difference.”
We are delighted to have Andrea involved with Women for Nature and have her act as an Ambassador of Nature Canada’s work to save species, protect nature and most especially, connect youth and families to nature.
To learn more, and get to know the amazing women involved, you can visit www.womenfornature.ca. If you or someone you know would be a good fit for Women for Nature, please reach out to me today at firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-800-267-4088 ext 239.