Mississippi Watershed Youth Engagement Program

The MLA is proud to announce a new program for the youth of our area thanks to a $5,000.00 grant received from the Lanark County Community Grants Program, along with a $1,000.00 contribution from the MLA itself.

We are looking for youth between the ages of 12 and 17 who are interested in learning about the Mississippi River Watershed and who would like to participate in some fun outdoor projects to help support and conserve the watershed. If you live in Mississippi Mills, Beckwith Township, the Town of Carleton Place, Drummond-North Elmsley, or the Perth area, we’d love you to be part of this great Program!

Why?

As one of the largest river systems in eastern Ontario (3,765km2), the Mississippi River is an invaluable resource, supporting a vast ecosystem made up of countless plants, animals, birds and other organisms. The health of the river and its watershed is vital to the ecological, social and economic wellbeing of its residents. The watershed provides drinking water, replenishes wetlands and groundwater, provides essential habitat for fish and wildlife, supports recreation and tourism, provides water for agricultural crops and livestock and provides hydroelectric power. A growing list of stressors and challenges impact these functions and values both directly and indirectly. Given the increasing threats due to climate change and other factors, it is vitally important that organizations like the MLA seek out opportunities to engage our youth in environmental initiatives that increase their awareness and understanding of these challenges and also help to empower youth to become active and engaged in environmental initiatives.

Who?

We are looking for youth between the ages of 12 and 17 who are interested in learning about the Mississippi River Watershed and who would like to participate in some fun outdoor projects to help support and conserve the watershed. If you live in Mississippi Mills, Beckwith Township, the Town of Carleton Place, Drummond-North Elmsley, or the Perth area, we’d love you to be part of this great Program!

When?

We will begin the Program in the fall of 2022 and it will span the school year, ending at the end of the summer 2023. Activities will be scheduled on weekends, some evenings and possibly some weekdays.

What?


While some activities and events have not been confirmed yet, here’s a list of the types of things we’ll be offering:

· Training Sessions – the watershed, invasive species, EDDMaps and iNaturalist apps, water chemistry and water quality testing

· Tours – the entire watershed and operating dams, drinking water treatment facilities, a hydroelectric station, Mississippi Lake, the National Wildlife Area and Bird Sanctuary on Mississippi Lake

· Events – planting a pollinator garden, creating a turtle conservation area, loon surveys, invasive species surveys, conducting water quality testing, conducting a shoreline assessment, planting a shoreline area to help prevent erosion

How?

If you are interested or if you know someone who would be interested in this Program, email Doreen Donald at environment@mlakes.org as soon as you can. Spaces are filling up.

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