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News from November 2019

Now Accepting Applications for the 2020 WSG

November 25, 2019

Planning a stewardship project in the coming year?

We are now accepting applications for the 2020 Watershed Stewardship Grant.

If you have a project in mind to enhance, protect or restore Alberta’s precious water resources, consider applying. Stewardship and synergy groups, naturalist organizations, recreational and community associations, and other non-profits can apply. We invite and encourage creative, innovative and collaborative stewardship projects.

The deadline for applications is January 13, 2020.

Learn more and apply today.


Welcome New Board Member

November 12, 2019

We’d like to introduce you to the newest member of the Land Stewardship Centre (LSC) Board of Directors, Suzanne Young, Director of Open Space Planning and Design with the City of Edmonton. Keep reading to learn more about Suzanne and why we’re excited to have her on the LSC board.

Suzanne holds a Bachelor of Environmental Conservation Science from the University of Alberta and Masters of Science (Planning) from the University of Guelph. She is a Registered Professional Planner and has worked in both Alberta and Ontario.

Suzanne currently works at the City of Edmonton as the Director of Open Space Planning and Design. Her team leads the planning and design of open space in Edmonton including neighbourhood, district, downtown, and river valley parks. In her previous role with the City, she focused her efforts on increasing natural area retention, improving ecological connectivity and integrating ecological designs, including the design and construction of wildlife passages, through various planning processes.

“I was motivated to join the LSC board as I have a strong interest in natural area protection and conservation,” shares Suzanne, “I am hopeful that I can bring some of my expertise and knowledge to support the Land Stewardship Center’s vision and mission.”

Prior to joining the City of Edmonton she worked for the City of Guelph and the Grand River Conservation Authority on diverse projects including: natural heritage policy planning, source water protection policy, watershed management, wetland policy, brownfield redevelopment, community plans, development review, a tree by-law, and the regulation of floodplains, steep slopes and significant wetlands (to name a few!)

“Over the course of my career I have been fortunate to work with committed and passionate members of the conservation community and I hope to continue this work as a member of the LSC Board,” expresses Suzanne.

Suzanne brings a wide array of experience and LSC looks forward to the significant contributions she’s sure to make at our organization.

“I hope to support the excellent work the LSC has initiated and look forward to contributing to positive outcomes through my expertise and knowledge of the land use planning, natural areas conservation and the associated legislative framework,” Suzanne concludes.


When Science Embraces Art

November 12, 2019

This local stewardship group is aiming to inspire conservation through the arts.

Have you heard about the recently debuted video series, Wild Constructs, developed by Watershed Stewardship Grant recipient, Weaselhead/Glenmore Park Preservation Society? This group has harnessed the powerful world of visual arts and fused it with scientific findings, to ensure their message resonates.

Conveying scientific principles to the public in an engaging way can be a challenge. In today’s digital era, people’s attention spans are short, and many do not immediately relate to scientific terms and jargon. To ensure their environmental messaging resonated with the public, The Weaselhead/Glenmore Park Preservation Society (WGPPS) decided to fuse science with art, and so developed Wild Constructs, a series of six short but meaningful videos.

Fusing arts and science

In 2018 and 2019, the Society received funding from the Watershed Stewardship Grant (WSG) towards a scientific study, which researched the environmental impacts of the Southwest Calgary Ring Road construction on the surrounding park and natural area. Then, with funding from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts and other supporters they were able to bring their creative idea – Wild Constructs – to life. At its core, Wild Constructs is a compelling conversation between science, art, wilderness and community.

“This video series was a unique way to convey the scientific and ecological findings of the impact study,” shares Lisa Dahlseide, biologist with the WGPPS.

Filmed on Treaty 7 land in the Weaselhead Natural Environment Area, the videos feature nine talented local artists who share their creative responses to the biological and social impacts of the Southwest Calgary Ring Road. The videos include spoken word poetry, dance, storytelling, drum and song. Each video is set to original song compositions that weave in wild sounds from field recordings taken in the park over the past three years.

The videos help communicate the impacts that noise pollution and construction may have on biodiversity. In addition to creating awareness of the impacts on the overall watershed, the Society hopes these videos inspire a broader audience to become motivated to support conservation efforts.

“Through these videos, we wanted to inspire people to travel the path of connecting arts with science,” adds Lisa. “Expressing scientific principles through art has so much potential to reach and impact a wider audience.”

Lights, camera, action

The Society’s debut of the Wild Constructs videos in Calgary at the Plaza Theatre in Kensington on September 22 attracted more than 150 people. The response was overwhelmingly positive. Following the debut, the Society received calls from several local schools, asking if the films could be shown to their students, and has also received interest from University of Alberta professors.

While not yet broadly available, Lisa says the Society is hoping to present the videos at various film festivals throughout the province. They have already booked a screening at a festival in Edmonton in spring 2020.

Coming soon

If you’re itching to see the new video series, the Society will be working with Land Stewardship Centre (LSC) to bring Wild Constructs to Edmonton in April 2020. Stay tuned for details to be announced on LSC social media channels and in future Grassroots News editions.

For a sneak peek, view the Wild Constructs trailer here. You can also keep up to date on the Society’s Facebook Page.


Stewards in Motion a Success

November 11, 2019

Stewards in Motion events offer community stewardship groups a chance to connect, learn and grow together.

At this year’s event, 50 people gathered in Edmonton to learn from a variety of experts how to boost their grant writing and fund development efforts for their community stewardship groups.

Speakers Jenna Curtis (Alberta Environment and Parks), Graeme Dearden (Volunteer Alberta), Leah Kongsrude (North Saskatchewan Watershed Alliance), Alexandra Frederickson (Land Stewardship Centre) and Simon Irving (Alberta Ecotrust) shared their experience, expertise and insight to help groups:

  • prepare strong grant proposals,
  • harness volunteer power for grant applications and community based efforts,
  • work collaboratively with others on funding applications,
  • maintain funder relationships, and more.

Here are several of our speaker presentations:

More speaker presentations will be made available here soon.