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  • News
  • September 04, 2015

Ontario Offering Grants to Help Protect the Great Lakes

Applications Now Open to Local Environmental Stewards

Picture 62(L-R) : Pat Piitz (Director, South Nation Conservation Authority), Trevor Mason (Owner, Bananas Caribbean Grill and Takeout), MPP Marie-France Lalonde, Allen Tweddle (Chair, Friends of Petrie Island), Meredith Brown(Riverkeeper and Executive Director, Ottawa River Keeper), Robb Barnes (Managing Director, Ecology Ottawa), Dan Cooper (Executive Director, Rideau Valley Conservation Authority), Jean-Marc Lalonde (Councillor, Clarence-Rockland), Doug Thompson (Chairman, South Nation Conservation Authority)


ORLÉANS- Ontario is calling on community groups to help protect, restore and enhance the Great Lakes by applying for a Great Lakes Guardian Community Fund grant.


Now in its fourth year, the fund provides a grant of up to $25,000 to not-for-profit organizations, schools, First Nations and Métis communities and other local groups for projects that have a direct environmental benefit to the Great Lakes. Past projects and activities supported by the fund have included:


  • Planting trees
  • Creating rain gardens
  • Restoring wetland habitat
  • Controlling invasive species
  • Cleaning up beaches or shorelines
  • Naturalizing stream banks and shorelines.


Applications will be accepted until October 23, 2015.


Supporting local efforts to protect the Great Lakes and other watersheds is part of the government's economic plan to build Ontario up. The four-part plan includes investing in people’s talents and skills, making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario’s history, creating a dynamic and innovative environment where business thrives, and building a secure retirement savings plan.




“I am excited about the launch of the application process of the Great Lakes Guardian Community Fund grants. This fund provides opportunities for various groups of citizens to work towards restoring, protecting and enhancing our natural environment. This is a particularly great opportunity for those who cherish the Ottawa River Watershed and require a little bit of capital towards their great projects.”

— Marie-France Lalonde, MPP for Ottawa-Orléans


“I strongly encourage people to become local guardians of their lakes and apply for a Great Lakes Guardian Community Fund grant. This fund gives communities the opportunity to undertake activities that will make a real difference for the environment, while uniting community members around a common goal. The fund not only recognizes and supports our local Great Lakes champions, it empowers them to do their part to restore, protect and conserve our Great Lakes to keep them drinkable, swimmable and fishable.”

— Glen Murray, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change




  • This year’s fund will award $1.5 million in total for eligible projects.
  • Since 2012, $4.5 million has been awarded to 221 community-based projects in Great Lakes watershed areas, including the St. Lawrence River Basin and the Ottawa River.
  • Projects must be completed by February 2017.

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