Tomorrow night will be exciting! I’ll be attending the Ecostar Awards Gala as the coordinator of the Greater Victoria NatureHood. We’ve been nominated for an award for innovation. This award: ” Recognizes an organization that has demonstrated innovative sustainability practices, products, services, and/or technology in their industry.”
What got us nominated is our Greater Victoria NatureHood map and brochure.Therefore, it’s only fitting that I’ll be joined by my friend and colleague, Kathleen Burton. The map is almost entirely her creation.
We’re up against some serious competition in the two other nominees in this category. To tell the truth, I’ll be surprised if we win the award. But you never know, right. And that would be simply awesome!
The map has already attracted a lot of attention and accolades. In June we received a conservation partner award from Nature Canada for it, as well as for the tribute exhibit of Fenwick Lansdowne, an internationally acclaimed Canadian wildlife artiist. Because his subjects were almost always birds, his paintings were was often compared with those of John James Audubon.
On the ground, we’ve gone through print runs for a total of 15,000 copies in just a few months. The second run of 8000 copies was only made possible by the generosity of an anonymous donor.
Our focus now is to take the map from being a static downloadable PDF on our website to being something much more innovative and interactive. We certainly don’t have the expertise to pull this off ourselves, so we’re about to enter into a partnership with an organization that can provide state-of-the art technology in this kind of project along with a large cadre of highly trained people who know what to do with it.
The Greater Victoria NatureHood is also embarking on two other exciting projects. We’ll be producing three short (1 – 1.5 min) videos about each of the region’s migratory bird sanctuaries. We’re also reaching out to some local indigenous educators to bring in their nation’s knowledge and practices to the Migratory Bird Activity Booklet we produced and released last spring.
Honestly, it would be very easy for me to carry on about all the great things the partners of the Greater Victoria NatureHood have done over the past four years, while I’ve been their coordinator. It truly is a great honour to be working with these organizations and to be able to contribute to the realization of our shared vision: “a deep and long-standing connection with the natural world of Greater Victoria” among residents and visitors alike.