Located in the heart of Peterborough, GreenUP’s Ecology Park is a five-acre urban sanctuary that immerses thousands of annual visitors in pollinator habitats and demonstration gardens, complemented by excellent educational programming for children and adults.
With your help, GreenUP is growing Ecology Park. We are developing new facilities and working to make the site more accessible — so that everyone may appreciate first-hand how solutions to climate change can be both easier and better for our quality of life than the wasteful habits we’ve become accustomed to.
This is GreenUP’s first capital campaign and we didn’t start small. The five-year Growing Ecology Park Campaign began in 2017. In our first year, donors generously helped us build a beautiful children’s education shelter and open-air classroom. In 2019 alone, over 1,000 children and students enjoyed ecological programs in that facility.
As 2019 concludes, we are completing the installation of a new low-water irrigation system in our native plant and tree nursery.
Next May and June, when you visit the Ecology Park Market Garden, you’ll be able to see how the low-water irrigation system can help conserve one of our most precious resources, while also growing local seedlings and trees for gardens across Peterborough.
Next year, we plan to significantly increase the accessibility of Ecology Park, while demonstrating the possibilities for sustainable development.
The 2020 Growing Ecology Park projects include the following:
- The construction of a low-impact, barrier-free washroom that will help ensure that we are able to accommodate 100% of the school classes, community groups, and visitors that desire to participate in our programs.
- The installation of accessible, permeable pathways will link the Ecology Park to the existing Trans Canada Trail (now called The Great Trail). These pathways will allow visitors and program participants to access key facilities at the park with greater ease and independence, while also ensuring that rain can permeate into the earth to maintain a healthy water cycle.
- The addition of a permeable foundation in our newly constructed children’s education shelter will ensure that this space can be safely and easily accessed by persons of all ages and abilities, including by persons using mobility devices.
- The installation of solar panels on our children’s education shelter will better light the outdoor classroom and key access routes. This will extend our working season, support programming, and enhance safety and security while demonstrating off-grid, sustainable energy generation.
“Our volunteer program at Ecology Park already engages people with disabilities in activities such as garden maintenance and plant nursery stock care,” explains Ecology Park manager Vern Bastable.
“If we can overcome our current physical barriers to access at Ecology Park, then it will allow an even greater number of people with disabilities to volunteer and will support greater mobility for people who are already participating.”
Your donations this holiday season will make these projects a reality in 2020. You can make a one-time donation or monthly donations. You can even gift a donation to a loved one or friend in combination with a gift certificate, so they can enjoy a new green product from the GreenUP Store or buy some new plants from Ecology Park.
GreenUP is a non-profit charity, so all donations and profits from sales at the GreenUP Store and at Ecology Park support our projects. For more information and to donate, visit greenup.on.ca.
“GreenUP is committed to environmental programming that builds our region’s capacity to meaningfully address the challenges yet to come,” says GreenUP executive director Brianna Salmon.
“By focusing on projects that increase resilience for people and places that are most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, we are able to support and enable meaningful action for people of all ages and abilities.”
As we look toward the future, community support remains vital. We are excited to continue strengthening our facilities to increase GreenUP’s capacity, to educate future generations and current residents, and to collectively build environmentally healthy and sustainable communities.
This story has been published in partnership with GreenUP.