Claire Wales and Enbridge Inc. Honoured with Conservation Foundation Awards

Posted on March 31, 2017

A year of outstanding successes in enriching the Place for Life was celebrated at the Essex Region Conservation Foundation (ERCF)’s Annual General Meeting on Wednesday, March 29.  “We demonstrated our strengthened relationship as we launched our new Place for Life visual identity,” stated Richard Wyma, the Foundation’s Executive Director.   “As well, we completed fundraising for the Cypher Systems Group Greenway, and broke ground in September.”  The opening of this long-awaited community trail is expected to take place this April.

Conservation Foundation Awards were also presented.  Mr. J. Claire Wales was honoured with the Clifford Hatch Conservation Foundation Award for his contributions to trail development in the Place for Life.  A member of the Foundation since 2014, Claire, an avid cyclist, has taken a leadership role with the CSC Bike Tour.  In 2015, he added a pledging element to the event, which was embraced by other Board members.  As a result, total funds raised were doubled.  “Claire has personally challenged other corporations and individuals to participate in and raise funds through this event, resulting in fun and friendly competitions which ultimately benefit trail development in the Place for Life,” Wyma said.

Enbridge Inc. was recognized with the Outstanding Corporate Contribution Award.  In 2016, the Holiday Beach Demonstration Wetland was constructed, thanks to a $33,000 contribution from Enbridge.  This one-acre wetland project will serve as a model of Best Management Practices for landowners, demonstrating a reduction in the amount of sediment and nutrients in our waterways.  As well as providing funding, Enbridge employees planted the native riparian species at this wetland.  “In addition to habitat and water quality benefits, this site will now become a living classroom for neighbouring schools,” Wyma noted.  Enbridge’s contribution also supports student education and engagement at the wetland.

2017 marks the fortieth anniversary for the Foundation, and Wyma promised a number of exciting initiatives that will be celebrated throughout the year.