February 2015: Significant work completed in 2014 (Orillia Packet & Times)
Oro-Medonte Township, Ontario
If Copeland Forest has a place in your heart, you need a place at this forum
Group seeks public input on future of Copeland Forest
WHAT: A public forum to gather input from user groups and residents about the challenges and opportunities regarding the future of Copeland Forest.
WHERE: Horseshoe Valley Ski Lodge, Alpine Room
WHEN: Saturday Nov. 3, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Lunch buffet and refreshments.
CONTACT: Dorthea Hangaard, Project Manager 705-326-1620, firstname.lastname@example.org
BACKGROUND:Copeland Forest is the largest intact forest within commuting distance of the Greater Toronto Area. It contains the headwaters of three significant watersheds, and is home to many rare plants and animals. Situated on the edge of the Oro Moraine, it filters groundwater, producing high-quality drinking water for thousands in the region. Due to its beauty and accessibility, it is also very popular with recreational users.
In 2011, The Couchiching Conservancy received funding from the Ontario Trillium Foundation to lead a community-based stewardship initiative in the Copeland Forest. In partnership with the Ministry of Natural Resources, which manages the forest, the Conservancy has been working with community groups and businesses to establish a stewardship committee to help care for the forest. A scientific inventory of the forest has been completed to provide the best possible information to support the decision-making process. The committee, carefully balanced to represent those now active in the forest, is seeking feedback from the general public as it strives to set key stewardship goals for the future.
THE FORUM:The public forum will be facilitated by Dr. Gordon Ball, adult educator and professional facilitator. The “Open Space” format has been chosen to allow participants to set the agenda in a framework of basic rules, and participants can expect a refreshing approach. “This conference will incorporate the best elements of a good coffee break,” Ball said. “The information gathered will be used to create recommendations on the future stewardship of Copeland Forest”, said Dorthea Hangaard, project manager for the Couchiching Conservancy. “We chose this format because it will give participants a chance to be heard in a creative setting,” Hangaard said. “People are really passionate about this forest and we want to tap into that.”
For more information on the project, please go to: http://www.couchichingconserv.ca/copeland-forest/news-and-events/