Research continues to highlight the benefits of children spending significant time building a relationship with the land. Rivers to Ridges was awarded $100,000 to open a forest school – a land-based education initiative – in Whitehorse, Yukon with an initial focus on preschool programming. With the intention of fostering a deeper sense of empathy, awareness, and community, this initiative will provide children with access to inquiry-based learning opportunities in outdoor spaces. The school will integrate First Nations knowledge and teachings through Elder involvement, and work to break down traditional barriers of accessibility for staff and participants. Rivers to Ridges will build capacity for outdoor learning opportunities for children across the Territory through educator training and mentorship. The school will empower a diverse range of Northerners to spend more time connecting meaningfully with the land.
Nominator: Remy Rodden, Manager, Environmental Education and Youth Programs, Department of Environment, Government of Yukon
Team: Erin Nicolardi, Emily Payne (Team Leaders)