Nature Canada Welcomes Her Honour, The Honourable Judith Guichon, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia and our 1st Young Women for Nature
Nature Canada was delighted to recognize Her Honour, the Honourable Judith Guichon, OBC, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia as our newest Women for Nature member for her life-long commitment to nature. Earlier this month, she graciously spoke about the importance of engaging youth voices for nature at the Child and Nature international conference in Vancouver.
She is visiting 150 schools in British Columbia this year to encourage young people “to become involved in our democracy in order to contribute to the goal of: Healthy People in Healthy Communities on Healthy Land.” To do so, Her Honour encouraged having “respectful relationships with all who share this land and with the land which supports us all, and a responsibility to leave our community, Province or state and our Nation better for all who follow.”
At this time, she helped name Nature Canada’s 1st Young Woman for Nature, Ms. Chloe Dragon Smith who was recognized for her leadership on the Nature Playbook and dedication to engaging more Canadians with nature.
Chloe co-chaired the intergenerational task force that developed the Nature Playbook which was used to inspire our Young Nature leaders for their own project ideas. Chloe is a young Chipewyan-European-Metis woman from the small city of Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. Her Northern upbringing shaped her values. It is her hope to empower others to connect with Nature and encourage them to find their paths in their own way.
When I am out in Nature, I am at my most observant, most alive, and most authentic self. The Nature Playbook is a simple, small way to invite others to connect with the land and hopefully, to evoke some of those same feelings of belonging and joy that have been so powerful for me.
Chloe Dragon Smith
What a wonderful way to celebrate our nation’s 150th birthday by encouraging young Canadians to act as a strong voice for nature!
Six additional young nature leaders from across the country have also been chosen as Nature Canada’s first recipients of our exciting new Young Nature Leadership Grant.
Established this year thanks to the generosity of Women for Nature members, the goal of the Young Nature Leadership Grant is to encourage, foster and nurture youth to demonstrate their own leadership for nature. Canadian youth were invited to develop and implement (in 2017) a project inspired by the Canadian Parks Council’s recently published The Nature Playbook.
The inaugural Young Nature Leadership Grant recipients include:
Caroline Merner, Victoria, BC
- Caroline is developing and leading interactive quick play sessions connecting people with nature’s changing tides and coasts.
Chantal Templeman, Cochrane, AB
- Chantal is bringing youth caving to teach them about bats and cave conservation, and encourage team-building and leadership skills while volunteering on projects in Banff National Park.
Martha Henderson, Whitehorse, Yukon
- Martha is developing a Girl’s Nature Club to engage and empower teenage girls with the wilderness knowledge and skills to help them become comfortable and confident with nature. She plans to inspire girls with positive role models through intergenerational sharing of nature knowledge.
Mathilde Papillon, Ottawa, ON
- Mathilde is developing a Green Wall for her school with the goal of bringing nature to current and future students to learn from and enjoy.
Nina Andrascik, Ottawa, ON
- Nina is developing a pilot project to encourage first generation new Canadians to enroll in outdoor education programs. She is creating a video series to document the participants experience and voices about their experience.
Olivia DesRoches, Hampton, NB
- Olivia and her Grade 11 Foundations of Math class are building and running a greenhouse on their school property to bring the knowledge of cultivating fruits and vegetables and flowers to students and to further their knowledge about the environment and pollinators.
What an awesome way to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary by empowering emerging Young Nature Leaders to champion nature. By working together we can conserve, and encourage new generations to connect with nature.
Dawn Carr, Women of Nature member & Executive Director of the Canadian Parks Council
To read more on Chloe Dragon Smith receiving the Young Women for Nature Award, click here.