Haliburton Highlands Land Trust:

The Haliburton Highlands Land Trust's 3-year turtle road mortality mitigation project is an excellent example of sustainability education and worth highlighting. Turtle populations are declining and one of the main threats is road mortality. The Land Trust came up with a unique underpass and barrier wall which proved to be successful in significantly reducing turtle mortality.  Over 125 volunteers were trained in turtle ecology and monitoring. In addition, public awareness was raised through a number of media articles and interviews and there has been a real positive shift in culture when people spot turtles on the road now.  Educational opportunities have been numerous as the Land Trust's project biologist has been asked to present on the project at a variety of conferences around Ontario and this fall will present at "Roads, Wildlife & Adaptation to Climate Change: From Research to Action Conference" in Quebec City, Quebec. For more information, please view www.haliburtonlandtrust.ca

Coalition of Haliburton Property Owners' Association (CHA):

The Coalition of Haliburton Property Owners' Association (CHA) launched the Love Your Love Shoreline Inventory Project. This four-year project is in its final year and will have assessed some 14,000 shoreline properties across 60 plus lakes by the end of this summer.  Each property is assessed by water to determine how much of the shoreline is natural, regenerative, ornamental or degraded with owners receiving a confidential assessment report on their shoreline, material about the importance of natural shorelines to lake health, as well as suggestions for upping the percentage of natural shoreline on their property.  Lake associations receive lake-wide results allowing them to determine where their water body stands in relation to the accepted standard of 75 percent natural within 30m of the high water mark. As of the end of the third year, results across 47 lakes indicated that only 8 percent met the 75 percent natural standard with the average natural level being 48 percent. The project is now beginning to transition its focus from the evaluation to restoration and is encouraging demonstration sites on member lakes as a way to "change the conversation" about what truly sustainable shoreline development looks like. More information about the project can be found on the CHA's website at: www.cohpoa.org/shoreline-health.

Haliburton Muskoka – Children’s Water Festival:

The Haliburton Muskoka – Children’s Water Festival – is a project of Friends of Ecological and Environmental Learning (FEEL). The first festival was presented in 2005. It is now an annual fall event. The Haliburton-Muskoka-Kawartha Children’s Water Festival brings together the expertise of educators, water quality and quantity specialists, community volunteers, conservation groups, industry and government to provide elementary students from Haliburton, Muskoka and the City of Kawartha Lakes with the opportunity to discover the importance and diversity of water. The purpose of hosting a Children’s Water Festival is to educate students on the importance of water quality, how the water (hydrology) cycle works, what each person can do to maintain and/or improve water quality so that future generations will have the water resources required to maintain human and animal populations. It is also important to educate students that what happens in the Muskoka and Haliburton Watersheds will impact upon communities, habitats and wildlife populations down stream. Given the reliance of the regional economy on our natural resource base, the wise use and protection of our resources, particularly water, that grows out of knowledge is essential to our continued well being. In the fall of 2016,over the 2-day event, 1234 elementary students from across the Trillium Lakelands District School Board area, including the County of Haliburton, City of Kawartha Lakes and District of Muskoka, came to the Kinark Outdoor Centre to learn about water and how to play a role in its protection.  Over the two days, students accompanied by their teachers, teaching assistants and parent supervisorshad fun making ecological connections to a variety of water related messages! There were 50 different activity centres, 9 of which were brand new this year. Twelve outside presenters and 197 volunteers were involved in delivering the various water related activities. To find out more information, please visit: www.ecoenvirolearn.org/projects.html

Abbey Gardens

Abbey Gardens is a not-for profit charity and their big dream is to transform a spent gravel pit (300 acres) into a green space that provides economic and recreational opportunities for our community. The gardens, hiking trails, Food Hub, educational displays and local business partners (including a craft brewery) are all located on site in the beautiful Haliburton Highlands, Ontario, and overlooking Grass Lake.  Everything they do helps further their mission to create opportunities to learn about living more sustainably. Tour the gardens, visit the heritage breed ponies and chickens, shop for local food at the Food Hub, enjoy lunch at their new restaurant patio or participate in one of their programming options throughout the year. For more information, please visit abbeygardens.ca.

U-Links Centre for Community Based Research

Established in 1999, the U-Links Centre for Community-Based Research works with community partners, faculty and students to deliver high quality, relevant research services to Haliburton County.  Through the innovative Community Based Education (CBE) program, U-Links works with community partners, and faculty and students from Trent University to bring the resources of the university to the community, and the resources of the community to the university.

The results of our research are used to foster community development in many aspects of life in Haliburton County including social services, culture and recreation, health, agriculture and the environment. For more information, please visit www.ulinks.ca.