Kawartha Lakes and surrounding region celebrates new environmental designation

KAWARTHA LAKES—Gatherings have been taking place across Kawartha Lakes, Haliburton and Peterborough to celebrate our designation as a Regional Centre of Expertise (RCE) for Sustainability Education. The designation comes from the International United Nations University and is endorsed by UNESCO.

On June 6, a launch event was held at the Frost Campus of Fleming College in Lindsay. It was attended by students, faculty, City staff and a variety of community partners and supporters. The program was opened with a prayer and remarks from First Nations Elder Dorothy Taylor, founder of the Sacred Water Circle and RCE First Nations Engagement Advisor.

Other remarks were shared highlighting inspiring sustainability initiatives including Nature Education Camps, a collaboration between Fleming College and Kawartha Conservation, Envirothon and Rangers Camp, and Sustainability Leadership through Fleming College and Trent University. The Leslie Frost Public School Children’s Choir provided the music and reflections were offered from Brett Goodwin, Dean of Frost Campus, Ron Taylor, the CAO of Kawartha Lakes, and Mayor Andy Letham, among others.

“On behalf of the Council of the City of Kawartha Lakes, I’d like to offer our congratulations and extend a sincere ‘thank you’ to all those who have made possible this new designation and who are actively trying to change the way we understand and treat our environment,” said Kawartha Lakes Mayor Andy Letham. “It gives me great hope to see all of you and to know that Kawartha Lakes is already taking a leading role.”

A video showcasing the inspiring ways our area is rich in expertise in Sustainability Education is available on YouTube at this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTiV3Ag7u_k&feature=youtu.be

Following the official celebrations, much ongoing work and discussions will follow to explore how local knowledge, expertise, best practices and technology can be shared across the region through this new network.