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This Earth Day, discover the NatureHood near you!
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This Earth Day, discover the NatureHood near you!

[caption id="attachment_31795" align="alignleft" width="150"]Image of Amanda Simard Amanda Simard, Writing Intern[/caption] This blog was written by writing intern Amanda Simard This year, Earth Day is on April 22! Learn how Nature Canada’s NatureHood program is the perfect fit with the 2017 campaign focus: EarthPLAY for Earth Day. About Earth Day Canada Earth Day Canada (EDC) is a national charity founded in 1990. It seeks to inspire and support people across Canada as they connect with nature and build resilient communities. It’s annual campaign works in conjunction with free, year-round, award-winning programs that get people of all ages outside, reconnecting them with nature.ed2017-playmemory-image EDC works closely with children and youth through several programs including EcoKids and their new EarthPLAY initiative. EDC also recognizes those leading the way in solving environmental challenges through their Hometown Heroes Awards. The organization works to engage diverse communities in the environmental NGO sector while helping their corporate partners achieve their sustainability goals. Earth Day 2017’s theme is EarthPLAY for Earth Day! Throughout the month of April, people across the country are encouraged to head outside to play and get in touch with nature. Why it’s important Getting kids outside and connecting with nature encourages an appreciation for the natural world. This motivates kids to advocate for and protect our planet in the future. What’s more? Being in nature increases mental and physical health, as well as overall wellbeing. Bringing back outdoor play and working to make nature a part of everyone’s day-to-day life makes for happy and healthy individuals. It is also crucial for fostering a planet-conscious generation. Get out in your NatureHood today! Much like the goals of EarthPLAY, Nature Canada’s NatureHood program seeks to connect people of all ages to nature right where they live. In Canada, many people live in urban areas but there is still plenty of nature to be found. We call this nearby nature! NatureHood inspires urban residents to connect with nature through celebratory events, educational and stewardship activities and events, and wildlife observation – all set in urban green spaces and Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA). Through strong partnerships with grassroots naturalist clubs and allies across Canada, NatureHood promotes nature awareness at the local level and exposes a new generation of nature lovers, naturalists and citizen scientists to nature all around them. In a world of cell-phones and social media, now more than ever Canadians need to remember the joys of being outside and interacting with nature! NatureHood aims to bring down the barriers keeping us from discovering the nature all around us.   Ready to get involved? Good news! We have partners in all different parts of Canada. Learn about the NatureHood near you. You can even take our virtual tours to discover nearby parks or see the natural beauty in other parts of the country! What nature are you connecting with this Earth Day? Let us know in the comments, or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter! Send us your pictures and tell us how you are working to connect your kids and family with nature. various NatureHood Activities

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Celebrating Women’s Leadership on Earth Day!
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Celebrating Women’s Leadership on Earth Day!

[caption id="attachment_11729" align="alignleft" width="143"]Image of Jodi Joy Jodi Joy Director of Development[/caption] Nature Canada is delighted to announce that we are joining forces with Kérastase Canada and L’Oréal Canada to celebrate women’s leadership this Earth Day.  Earth Day is a world-wide annual event celebrated on April 22 that inspires and supports people across the country to connect with nature. [caption id="attachment_32586" align="alignright" width="149"]Image of Nadia Petrolito Nadia Petrolito[/caption] Kérastase Canada is launching their new luxury hair product line – Aura Botanica – which is made of 98% natural and responsibly sourced ingredients, including hand-pressed coconut and argan oils and no silicone or sulfates.   Proceeds from Aura Botanica sales throughout the week of April 21 – 28th are kindly being donated to Nature Canada’s conservation efforts in celebration of Earth Day! As part of this exciting partnership, Nature Canada is also proud to welcome Ms. Nadia Petrolito, the Vice-president, General Counsel and Chief Communications Officer for L'Oréal Canada as our newest Women for Nature member. Ms. Petrolito spearheads L’Oréal Canada’s Sharing Beauty With All sustainable development program aimed at reducing the company's environmental footprint.  Kérastase Canada saves 30 tons of plastic per year by using recycled materials, and 45 tons of plastic per year with its new cap design. L’Oréal Canada also ranks among the top 25 corporate investors in renewable energy resources. istock_000007722182xlarge-mother-and-child1Our Women for Nature brings Canadian women together to use their influence and passion for nature to help drive change. Ms. Petrolito's  expertise and her commitment to ethical and sustainable beauty, makes her a great addition to Nature Canada's Women for Nature initiative. “Kérastase Canada and L’Oréal Canada are pleased to support Nature Canada’s Women for Nature initiative," says Ms. Nadia Petrolito, L’Oréal Canada. "We are committed to an environmentally responsible management approach and strive for excellence in terms of environmental performance.  Nature Canada's Women for Nature directly aligns with our company’s values and beliefs that women’s leadership can bring innovation, excellence and help drive change. I’m delighted to become part of this exciting initiative.” adds Ms. Petrolito. Please learn more about Kérastase’s Aura Botanica hair products and L’Oréal Canada’s sustainability efforts.

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Media Advisory – Kérastase Canada joins forces with Nature Canada to celebrate Earth Day and the Launch of Aura Botanica
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Media Advisory – Kérastase Canada joins forces with Nature Canada to celebrate Earth Day and the Launch of Aura Botanica

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 2017 - Kérastase Canada joins forces with Nature Canada to celebrate Earth Day and the Launch of Aura Botanica; a new 98% natural range of haircare made with organic and responsibly sourced ingredients. Aura Botanica has transformed nature's raw power into a refined experience for women which makes for a perfect collaboration with Nature Canada and its Women for Nature program. Women for Nature is the collaborative voices of Canadian women with vision – women of influence who chose to demonstrate their passion for nature and pass their values on to others to drive change. The program focuses on connecting more Canadians with nature, an idea Kérastase and Aura Botanica fully embrace. Kérastase will be donating all the proceeds from the sales of Aura Botanica from April 21st to April 28th.  Connect with nature and experience Aura Botanica in your daily life with Kérastase Canada and Nature Canada.


About Nature Canada Nature Canada was founded in 1939 because of the passion and initiative of Mabel Frances Whittemore, a teacher and nature lover whose main goal in life was to share her passion for nature. Today, Nature Canada represents a network comprised of 50,000 members and supporters. Over the past 78 years, Nature Canada has helped protect more than 63 million acres of parks and wildlife areas in Canada and countless species that depend on this habitat as well as engaging hundreds of thousands of Canadians especially children in nature through its activities. About Women for Nature Nature Canada‘s signature “Women for Nature” initiative raises awareness about the need to connect more Canadians of all ages to nature. The Women for Nature initiative is comprised of women from diverse sectors and backgrounds who come together to champion the importance of nature in the daily lives of all Canadians and to encourage more Canadians to connect with nature. Our founding members include women of influence such as Senator Diane Griffin (Honorary Chair of Women for Nature), Dr. Brenda Kenny, and Prof. Ann Dale to name a few. Our members champion efforts to engage youth and families to explore and protect nature and in doing so, ensure the health and well-being of our Canadian society. It also has a goal of being 150 Women Strong by Canada’s 150th anniversary. About KÉRASTASE Canada Since 1964, Kérastase represents the finest in luxury care for hair, setting new standards in professional haircare and styling products distributed through selected salons. The vision of Kérastase is Very Personal Care for Exceptional Hair, inspired by our intimate acquaintance with the personal nature of hair care.  Kérastase provides customized products and tools for exceptional hair. Kérastase meets the expectations of women thanks to L'Oréal Advanced Research which selects its most advanced technology for Kérastase: Kérastase products are unique, avant-garde formulas with innovative ingredients. Women aspire to Kérastase for the ultimate in haircare and styling and the ultimate in beautiful hair.

A conversation between Women for Nature members, Professor Ann Dale and Candice Batista
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A conversation between Women for Nature members, Professor Ann Dale and Candice Batista

[caption id="attachment_32495" align="alignleft" width="150"]Image of Candice Batista Candice Batista, Women for Nature Member[/caption] Featuring Women for Nature member Professor Ann Dale. Written by fellow Women for Nature member Candice Batista.  I had the opportunity to interview fellow Woman for Nature, Professor Ann Dale (who is also the co-chair for Women for Nature) about her love of nature and what led her to become a leader in environmental stewardship in Canada. When I read her resume I was blown away, I mean this woman is impressive; she’s received national and international recognition for her research in the field of sustainable community development. Her research on governance, innovation and community vitality is designed to provide useful knowledge to Canadian decision-makers. [caption id="attachment_26965" align="alignright" width="150"]Image of Ann Dale Professor Ann Dale, co-chair for Women for Nature[/caption] She is deeply committed to online conversations on critical public policy issues and novel research dissemination tools, such as her YouTube channel (yep she has her own channel) HEADTalks. As well, she is an active researcher leading MC3, a climate change adaptation and mitigation research program studying best practices and community innovations in throughout British Columbia. Wow right? Our conversation was so inspiring, she, like me, has loved animals her whole life. Here’s a closer look at this inspiring lady. Candice Batista: Why did you get involved with women for nature?  Ann Dale: Let me start at the beginning, I was a tomboy, I was always outside, in fact when my parents made me come inside, they were punishing me.  So it’s kind of ironic that I ended up in academics. If I had become a wildlife biologist, I would be able to be outside most of the time. I have always loved animals.  I’ve had dogs since I was six years old and I would not be the person I am today if those animals had not been in my life. I never really had a definitive a career path, like all the guys I grew up with that wanted to be doctors and lawyers, I did not know what I wanted to be. But there were two criteria that I used for my jobs; first, it is going to make a difference and the second was I was going to learn something, learn something to improve myself and that guided my career choices. I followed my heart and never lost my love for being outside. I am an avid swimmer and in my late 30’s I became a part-time gardener, so anything I could do to be outside would work. With Women for Nature, I saw a way to empower younger women to make a difference through this group in many different ways.  Biodiversity conservation is the social imperative for this decade and the next decade.  There is no second chance. CB: We really need to get our acts together when it comes to the loss of biodiversity and conservation. AD: I don’t think it’s going to take as long for people to get our act together as it did with climate change because people can now see and feel climate change, I mean everyone is talking about this past winter in Canada. So people can see even more loss of biodiversity and once they start making critical connections between biodiversity, climate change and sustainability, I think we will start moving fast. What would Canada be like without any polar bears or the call of the common loon in the spring? CB: What advice do you have for future Women of Nature? Image of Professor Ann DaleAD: Learn as much as you can about your neighbourhood, get outside, walk it, live it, breathe it. One of the things I have learned in my travelling is you need to walk, to get to really know a place. Get as much education as you can in so many different areas, be as ecologically literate as you are professionally literate. We have so much to learn from nature, there is so much wisdom if you just keep your eyes, your ears and your heart open to what is out there. CB: What does nature really mean to you?  AD: Nature to me is everything outside. That even means bringing nature back into our cities, nature makes cities more livable. The other day there were two raccoons stuck in a garbage can near our condo and nobody knew what to do with them. So I just put a stick in and they crawled out, We need to share our space with the ‘others’, if you see a live worm on the pavement following a rain storm, take a moment and move it back onto the grass. I would like to add that I will be leading a series of on-line virtual conversations on why biodiversity conversation is the human imperative of this century, with other women from Women for Nature, starting this September. You can listen in to these e-conversations at here.


"There is nothing more important to me than the conservation and sustainability of Nature. Working with Nature Canada to ensure that future generations have the opportunity to enjoy nature, like I did when I was a child, is simply imperative to me. We only have one planet. We have a responsibility to take care of it. In the same way it takes care of us.” Candice Batista, Eco-Journalist, Women for Nature member
 
“Nature’s future, our future, requires us to collaborate, innovate, and lead.  We are working together to sustain biodiversity and heart-felt connection to nature across this great country.” Prof. Ann Dale and Dr. Brenda Kenny, Co-chairs, Women for Nature
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Southbrook Vineyards: an example of sustainable practices for vineyards everywhere
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Southbrook Vineyards: an example of sustainable practices for vineyards everywhere

Sheep in a vineyard"Organic, bio dynamic and LEED certified, what exactly does that look like," I asked myself before visiting Southbrook Vineyards recently. I was amazed to have a tour of the grounds and learn about the many ways Southbrook works to minimize its impact on the land. I learned about the various plants around the building that naturally ward off pests from the grapes. I learned about their bioswale which breakdowns pollution from stormwater runoff. I saw their reflecting ponds which naturally increases light into their building. I thought it brilliant to have a flock of sheep which ‘mow” the land and can be a source of natural fertilizer in the spring. It was encouraging to see many positive, sustainable approaches being employed which clearly balance their business needs and the environment. Nature Canada staff thank Bill and Marilyn Redelmeier and all the staff of Southbrook Vineyards for being a shining example to others to inspire change. We were delighted to partner with them recently for an Earth Hour Winemakers dinner and appreciate their kind charitable donation which supports our conservation work. If you happen to visit the Niagara area, why not make a visit yourself to Southbrook and enjoy the tour, their wines, jams, honey and learn more about how they are making a difference and motivating others. If you would like to partner on an Event to help spread the message about Raising Your  Voice for Nature, please contact Jodi Joy at 1-800-267-4088 ext 239 or jjoy@naturecanada.ca  

Happy Earth Day!
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Happy Earth Day!

[two_third] In celebration of Earth Day and to welcome back the migrating birds we headed out to the globally significant Lac Deschênes – Ottawa River Important Bird Area this weekend for a day of spring cleaning. Spring migration is gearing up and a great group of enthusiastic volunteers meet up with Nature Canada staff at two locations along the urban stretch of the Ottawa River to collect garbage. Garbage is not only an eye sore for people who want to enjoy the outdoors, it can also be incredibly dangerous for birds and other wildlife. The majority of the garbage we collected consisted of small things such as bottle caps, cigarette butts and small pieces of plastic. Take out coffee cups and empty water bottles were also abundant. In addition we had a couple of pretty interesting finds such as a pair of roller skates, part of the hull of a boat, kitchen equipment and a lamp shade. Of course we also took some time to watch the birds in the area and saw quite a few species. It feels like new species are spotted almost every day now as migrating birds take advantage of the warming weather and the insects that are hatching out of the river. At Britannia Bay the species we saw and heard were the Ring-billed Gull, Canada Goose, European Starling,  American Crow, Blue Jay, Mallard, House Sparrow, Black-capped Chickadee, White-breasted Nuthatch, Red-breasted Nuthatch, Ruby-crowned Kinglet and Common Grackle. At Bate Island the species we saw and heard were the Canada Goose, Mallards, Common Golden-eye, Ring-billed Gull, Red-winged Blackbird, Black-capped Chickadee, Lesser Scaup, Tree Swallow, Barn Swallow, House Sparrow and European Starling.

The swallows were swooping out over the river in a beautiful moving flock picking up insects. You can see the most recent reported bird sightings along the Lac Deschênes – Ottawa River Important Bird Area right on the homepage of naturecanada.ca On behalf of the birds we would like to ask you to make sure that your garbage makes it into the garbage bin and we encourage you to help others do the same. Together we can all keep our green spaces clean for the wildlife who call it home, and for the people who visit to enjoy nature. Thank you and happy Earth Day! [/two_third] [one_third_last] [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="320"]Image of waste in a park Click to see more images from the day.[/caption] Image of swallows [/one_third_last]

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