Friends of Fish Creek Provincial Park Society, Recipient

Nestled in the city of Calgary is an oasis of flowing water, vibrant plants and thriving wildlife. Spanning 3,300 acres (over 1,300 hectares), Fish Creek Provincial Park sees more than four million visitors a year. Because of the huge volume of people coming through, from dog walkers to bird watchers to fishers, Fish Creek is at risk of degradation. The Friends of Fish Creek Provincial Park Society teaches people how to responsibly enjoy the area through what the organization refers to as “pop-up outreach.” Sail signs, volunteers and more educate the public on how to keep this area beautiful for years to come. From towering forests to sweeping grasslandsPhoto compilation of a banner, logo table cover and volunteer standing by a park beaver sign. Fish Creek provides a wonderful break from the surrounding urban environment. Although there may be thousands of visitors on any given day, the vast area creates the illusion that each visitor is the only one cycling through the beautiful forest, walking by the natural wetland or enjoying the breeze as it ripples through the grassland. From skateboarders to photographers, visitors of all kinds enjoy the five different eco-regions’ diverse wildlife, insects, plants and birds. By setting up a table alongside a trail and spontaneously engaging park visitors, Friends of Fish Creek educates and informs people on how to responsibly enjoy the nature area. Thanks to the 4imprint one by one® grant, “the Friends” were able to purchase beautiful, branded outdoor sail signs. The signs ensure the pop-up outreach stations are easily recognizable and attention-grabbing. Spontaneous outreach pays off Essential to Fish Creek’s ecosystem is the beaver. When beavers dammed up so much water that a popular pathway flooded, many people wanted the beavers to go. Friends of Fish Creek, knowing how important these animals were, worked to convince people of a better way to manage the beavers’ impact. Through hard work and education, the organization raised enough funds to install flow control devices to prevent flooding. Training was also provided so volunteers can monitor and maintain these devices. During one training session, a 15-year-old young man, Himanshu, arrived, eager to help. He dove headfirst into doing everything he could to protect Fish Creek and teach others. “We can only do what we do through the support of a very wide range of different supporters, from the 4imprint grant to people like Himanshu. This one by one® grant has been an incredible new addition to our organization, and we’re so grateful,” Katie Bakken, Community Engagement Manager, said.

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