Friday, January 23, 2009

Local Solutions for the Planet

When I started blogging I thought I'd talk about two things: Fundraising and the Environment. So far it has all been about fundraising. Until today. I made a speech at work this morning. I'm not quite as good as Barack Obama's speech writer but important politicians listened politely anyway.

I thought I'd just pop this up for those of you interested in what I actually do ... you know...when I'm not blogging!

Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority
Annual General Meeting
Kimberley MacKenzie, Foundation ED – Speech

January 23, 2009

Good morning, Thank you Chair Hackson, I’m pleased to be here on behalf of the Lake Simcoe Conservation Foundation today.

I fundamentally believe that the solutions to our very real global environmental crisis lay within the local work that happens in the ground. Picking up a shovel, getting your hands dirty and improving the health of your front yard will change the landscape and future of our planet. These local acts of kindness to the planet will cumulatively have a significant global impact.

The Lake Simcoe Watershed is an inspiration. It inspires because here we see a real commitment by all levels of government, the staff within the Conservation Authority are extremely passionate about their work and of course there is extraordinary community engagement on all fronts, but mostly the work that is happening here is inspiring because people are doing real tangible things to improve the environment right at home – in their backyard.

The Lake Simcoe Conservation Foundation is extremely proud to be able to support this work through donations from individuals and businesses in this watershed. People who care so much they are willing to open their pocket book and put their own money toward many of the programs Chair Hackson mentioned a few minutes ago.

2008 was another record setting year for the Lake Simcoe Conservation Foundation. This past year we were able to contribute over $430,000 of private sector funding for a cleaner, healthier Lake Simcoe Watershed. This money was leveraged with government funding and resulted in an investment of $2.2 million. This funding helped plant over 55,000 trees to clean our air and more rocks than we can count to stabilize shorelines to clean our water. We also helped educate about 8,000 children to be responsible environmental stewards for their planet – this will protect our future.

These are great accomplishments and it is with optimism - for the future of our organization and our planet - that we can look ahead to 2009. Our board of directors is coming to the end of a very intensive strategic planning process. This new plan will set the framework for our future together and we look forward to working with the LSRCA board of directors and staff on its implementation.

Our fundraising in 2009 will continue to have a strong focus of enhancing our individual giving program and of course we will continue to build our major gift program. Our efforts will remain aggressive. The need is still great and there is a lot of work to do.

There is extraordinary momentum in our watershed. Together we can continue to be full of optimism for our future. The strong leadership that can account for our mutual success in 2008 will continue into the coming year.

Thank you.

Thank you for spending time here.

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