Sounds under the Stars!

By Gamiing Nature Centre

Fall has officially arrived in the Northern hemisphere on September 23th at 4:21am ET. And in the Southern hemisphere, spring has just begun.  To celebrate the beginning of the fall season, we will host our last “Sounds under Stars” summer series this Saturday, September 26th.

Sounds under the stars

Misto Restaurant in Lindsay (155 St. David Street) will be offering a special menu that evening for those coming to the Hayloft for “Sounds under the Stars”.

Come and join us for “Sounds under Stars” on September 26 at 7:30pm at the Hayloft, 1884 Pigeon lake Road, between Bobcaygeon and Lindsay.

Summer Catch Up!

By Marcelo Kawanami

Hi everyone! Hope you are all enjoying the summer. I’m currently in South America and here it is very cold. I wanted to post some updates on Gamiing Nature Centre. On June 20th we had our annual Summer Lakeshore Festival. The weather really helped and we prepared workshops regarding birds of prey, developed interactive exhibits, and much more. You can check some of the photos from the Festival at our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/gamiing

birds of prey

We also had School Field Trips at Gamiing for our outdoor education program. Bowmanville and Lady Eaton School visited us in June for a day of outdoor activities combined with environmental education. If you would like to know more about our School Field Trips, please visit our website: http://www.gamiing.org/School_Field_Trips.php

Winterlude 2015!

By Marcelo Kawanami

Hi everyone! Winterlude at Gamiing Nature Centre is right around the corner! It will be hosted on February 16th, 2015 from 11am to 4pm at Gamiing’s facilities. So bundle up and head down to Winterlude 2015 for a fun afternoon full of outdoor activities!

Winterlude 2015

Great interview with Linda Skilton from Fleming College!

By Marcelo Kawanami

Hi everyone! This is our first post of 2015, and it could not be better! I had the privilege of interviewing Ms. Linda Skilton, PhD, Dean and Principal of Frost Campus at Fleming College. Gamiing Nature Centre and Fleming College’s School of Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences (SENRS) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to further develop and strengthen our relationship. Due to this reason, I wanted to know from Linda her opinion on the benefits of this partnership and also her point of view regarding environmental trends.

Gamiing: The School of Environmental & Natural Linda SkiltonResource Sciences (SENRS) atFleming College has a focus on active, outdoor, and hands-on learning. What are the main benefits that you believe that the partnership with Gamiing Nature Centre will bring to your students?

Linda: The students at the Frost Campus have been involved with many activities at Gamiing including course work in the Ecosystem Management program through the Credit for Product course, field placement in various programs and so on. The formalized partnership MOU that was signed in December 2014 will ensure our involvement with Gamiing in the future and lead to more activities for our staff and students.

Gamiing: According to a recent article from McKinsey, there is a chronic under-investment in leadership development within the fast growing social sector (which includes environmental organizations). What are the main attributes that you believe that the future leaders of these organizations need to have and that are being developed on SENRS students?

Fleming CollegeLinda: From the time that our students enter our programs at SENRS, we assist them in developing their leadership skills. These skills are developed through a number of courses and the applied activities that students participate in throughout their program of study. Many assignments include project/team work where the students are expected to demonstrate their leadership skills. Future leaders in the environmental sector need to be knowledgeable, critical thinkers, innovators and possess excellent communication skills. It is not only important to have the technical knowledge but it is critical that graduates can are able to communicate with those who may not have environmental knowledge. There are big environmental problems in need of big solutions and leaders who can contribute to the change necessary to address these problems. Colleges are investing in leadership development and our graduates are demonstrating these skills in a variety of careers in the environmental sector.

Gamiing: Partnerships with community stakeholders including the private sector, universities, and government are key to drive the growth of nonprofit organizations. In your point of view, how can we increase the engagement of community stakeholders and promote partnerships like the one between SENRS and Gamiing?

Linda: SENRS has over 100 partners including Kawartha Conservation, the Ontario Clean Water Agency, the City of Kawartha Lakes and Trent University. Our partners are both public and private sector, local, provincial, national and international. Partners bring opportunities for our faculty, staff and students to engage in applied activities and joint ventures that would not be possible to do on our own. Our partnerships are always growing and expanding with the goal of working collaboratively to achieve goals that contribute to positive change in our world. Increased engagement comes naturally when people rally around and are passionate about the things that matter. What matters to our staff, students and partners are clean air and water, social justice, food safety and security and the protection of our natural resources. Our shared goal is on the overall health and sustainability of our planet.

What a great summer! Ready for the next season!

By Marcelo Kawanami

So, the summer is over once again … but as usual it has left good memories for all Gamiing’s team. This year, we received approximately 1,000 elementary students visiting Gamiing’s center and facilities!!!

Kawartha Lakes - Fall picWe had tons of fun and Gamiing’s team prepared many activities in order to entertain and educate our visitors. This year, we not only received a record number of visitors, but we focused our activities on educating the kids on the new challenges that our planet is facing through dynamic and group activities. We all enjoyed the outdoors taking advantage of the amazing infrastructure that we have!

The end of summer means the beginning of a new season. Thus, we keep with our ongoing activities and preparing ourselves for the upcoming events. Interpretive Trails Walk, special workshops, Fall Festivals and Halloween party, Volunteer Days, Winterlude… Ow! So many things! And we hope to see you all.

Celebrating First Nations!

By Marcelo Kawanami, post suggested by Suzanne from Kawartha Lakes Mums

Curve Lake First Nation Pow Wow

National Aboriginal Awareness Month is recognized by the federal government every June
in an effort to celebrate the contributions of Indigenous peoples in Canada. During the month of June, Aboriginal history is brought to the forefront in Canada. It is a month for aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people to reflect upon the history, sacrifices, contributions, culture and strength of First Nations, Inuit and Metis people. Thus, we could not forget to write a post regarding this special month that has just passed, once the First Nations have a direct link to the history of the Kawartha Lakes.

“Kawartha” is an Anglicization of the word “Ka-wa-tha” (from “Ka-wa-tae-gum-maug” or Gaa-waategamaag), a word coined in 1895 by aboriginal Martha Whetung of the Curve Lake First Nations. It was hoped that the word, which meant “land of reflections” in the Anishinaabe language, would provide a convenient and popular advertising label for the area, much as “Muskoka” had come to describe the area and lakes north of Gravenhurst. The word was subsequently changed by tourism promoters to Kawartha, with the meaning “bright waters and happy lands.”

According to the last report from Statistics Canada, 1.9% (1,385) of the population of Kawartha Lakes had an Aboriginal identity. Aboriginal Peoples of those, 47.7% (660) reported a First Nations identity Aboriginal Peoples only, 43.3% (600) reported a Métis identity only, and 5.4% (75) reported an Inuit identity only. An additional 35, or 2.5%, reported other Aboriginal identities.

Kawartha LakesIndigenous peoples are caretakers of Mother Earth and realize and respect her gifts of water, air and fire. First Nations peoples’ have a special relationship with the earth and all living things in it. This relationship is based on a profound spiritual connection to Mother Earth that guided indigenous peoples to practice reverence, humility and reciprocity. It is also based on the subsistence needs and values extending back thousands of years. We should all celebrate and recognize the importance First Nations every day of the year!

Events & Workshops!

By Marcelo Kawanami

Ow the spring! It has finally arrived. And with that Gamiing is ready for a full season of events and workshops. Next Saturday, we are hosting our annual Easter EcoEgg Hunt. We have prepared tons of activities for the entire family, including forest Bingo and Hunting with Your Senses!

Gamiing Nature Centre property - great infrastructure and natural space for fun and education

The admission for this event is by donations which will support our Eco Guardian programs. Apart from our annual events, Gamiing has also prepared a calendar of workshops for the spring. Some of our already famous and well known workshops are in the agenda such as the Wild Edibles and the Tree Identification.

The workshops are a great opportunity to visit Gamiing`s space and also increase your knowledge on relevant topics regarding our fauna and flora. Additionally, it is a moment to relax, interact and learn!

Please check our workshop calendar in the following link: http://www.gamiing.org/Workshops.php

Special thanks: I also would like wish Katie Clapham all the best on her new endeavor! Thank you!!!

We are friends of the osprey!

By Marcelo Kawanami

Distribution of osprey in Canada

Today I would like to share with you an interesting organization from the Kawartha regionand its incredible work. Called Friends of the Osprey, it is a volunteer organization for the Kawartha Lakes region that focuses on the osprey, which is an indicator species for the health of the Kawartha Lakes environment.

Ospreys are very important as an umbrella species, which reflects the health of an aquatic ecosystem. Being the Kawartha lake region an important aquatic system for Canada, we can easily understand the importance of the ospreys for our ecosystem.

Picture1Ospreys are good indicators of the health and abundance of the fish stocks they hunt, and can alert us to the impending threats to that fish stock in the form of harmful pollutants such as DDT and DDE.

Friends of the Osprey work we do involve osprey nest building, workshops and visits to elementary schools to teach young people about the importance of the osprey. If you want to learn more about this amazing organization, please visit their website: http://www.friendsoftheosprey.org/index.html

Gamiing Nature Centre receives $750.00 grant from Sir Sandford Fleming College

By Marcelo Kawanami

Gamiing Nature Centre is pleased to announce the receipt of a $750.00 grant from Sir Sandford Fleming College, which will be invested towards the construction of a sustainable washroom in order to improve our facility and infrastructure.

As part of the Leadership in the Environment course, all first semester students at the Frost Campus, in partnership with C-Links, explore the relationship between community and the environment. Working in teams, students choose a non-profit organization in the City of Kawartha Lakes area and an issue or project that this agency is involved with. This project supports students to better understand the role that community organizations play in relation to caring for and contributing to a healthy environment. The best presentation is awarded a $750.00 grant that goes to the students chosen organization in order to help the funding of the projected researched by students.

The Community Leadership Project Final Presentations

The group of students who chose to work with us were Austin Carmichael, Mathew Fitzgerald, Lee Scholl, and Ryan Wheatley. The project was to research sustainable washroom designs, choose the best/most feasible design, and delegate the best way of spending the grant money. These students went well above and beyond the duties of this project and won first place in the Community Leadership Project Finals.

Gamiing Nature Centre would like to thank these students very much for their hard work and dedication. We are very excited for the opportunity to move forward with this project. Check our Website (www.gamiing.org) and Facebook page (www.facebook.com/gamiing) for future updates on our progress.

Busy Months!

By Marcelo Kawanami

camper

Hello everyone! I know I have been absent from the blog lately, but I’ll try to catch up now by bringing you some of the latest news and updates from Gamiing! October was truly a busy month. We had our Volunteer Days and also the Halloween event, which was pretty cool! Gamiing’s staff and volunteers did a great job by decorating the facility with scary dolls and a graveyard. Gamiing also held their very popular Wild Edibles workshop in October. This workshop covered identifying, harvesting and preparing wild edible plants.

Wildlife at GamiingWe also had another volunteer day on November 16th which focused on planting walnut trees and cleaning seed. Another big news: we have a new website! Gamiing’s website is all renovated, with a new layout, and updated information. Some links are still under construction but I would like to invite you all to visit and explore our new website: www.gamiing.org

That’s all for today, but I’ll soon come with more exciting news soon.