With the flick of an eye, many of us had our routines and schedules flipped on their heads. We were told to socialize (physically) with no-one who is not in our immediate household. We were told not to go into work. Our gyms, libraries, restaurants, bars, community halls were closed. It was spring. The air was warming. The outdoors were calling. So we sought parks, trails and beaches. And then they were closed. And now with them beginning to open, and with a summer void of festivals and gatherings on the horizon, we sought them once again.
Never before has it been more apparent how important publicly accessible green spaces are. Not only do they build our community resilience to crises like climate change but they provide critical mental health supports for our populations. The science on the connection that nature brings our mental well-being is established, the covid-19 global pandemic has brought this need into clear focus.
And though it’s the need for green space that brings this opportunity into stark focus, the benefits of reintroducing nature into our built and rural environments abound. Stormwater ponds help absorb rainwater after intense spring storms, wetlands, native trees and plants support building resilient communities filtering pollutants and strengthening our ability to withstand the impacts of climate change. Green roofs and walls in urban centers counter the intense heat effect of Canadian summers in heavily built environments. Recent analysis by the Our Living Waters Network and Green Infrastructure Ontario show that by investing in nature and water security also creates jobs.
It’s why we are asking our community, and supporters, to join with us in asking for a greater investment in our natural spaces.
Invite our governments (nation, local, provincial and federal) to start working with nature.
When we open up to nature, we all reap the rewards. In the aftermath of quarantine and closure, it’s time to open up and make room for nature.
How will you open up to nature?
Sign up and over the coming months we will invite you along on our journey of opening up to nature!
Yes! I want to open up to nature. Please share with me tips, tools and approaches for how I can support nature in my home and in my community.