Metro Vancouver Close Up – Resident Donates $2.8 Million to Aid Regional Parks Funding

Metro Vancouver Close Up logoOn February 6th, 2015, Metro Vancouver announced a significant financial bequest from the estate of a Metro Vancouver resident, earmarked to support the Regional Parks system. Find out who made this generous donation and how it will be spent.

“Today we are here to announce the generous donation by George Ross to Metro Vancouver Regional Parks of 2.8 million dollars,” said Metro Vancouver Board Chair Greg Moore to an audience of media, dignitaries, and invited guests gathered at Kanaka Creek Regional Park in Maple Ridge.

Love of Outdoors Drives Donation

artists renderingMr. Ross was a long-time Burnaby resident who loved walking forested trails. Three hundred thousand dollars of his legacy, 600 thousand dollars from Metro Vancouver, and funds raised by the Pacific Parklands Foundation and the Kanaka Education and Environmental Partnership Society will allow the Watershed Stewardship Centre, the Administration building and the classroom become a reality. The remaining 2.5 million dollars will be used to create a George Ross Legacy Stewardship Program.

“This is an incredible opportunity for our community,” said Nicole Read, Metro Vancouver director and the mayor of Maple Ridge. “We are very grateful to see the funding gap close that will bring this Centre to fruition.”

Leaving a Legacy

David Pohl, President of the Pacific Parklands Foundation, thinks the donation is a great example of an individual helping to ensure our parks continue to offer the the positive experiences that Mr Ross enjoyed.

tree planting“It’s the government’s responsibility to give us a wonderful parks system like we have and I think it’s all of us collectively as citizens to help make it the best it can be.”

A Sitka Spruce was planted on the grounds in honour of the late Mr. George Ross.

“This is an idea that people should embrace,” said Metro Vancouver Regional Parks Committee Chair Heather Deal. “Parks are a legacy, something that you can leave behind that is tangible.”

Classroom Without Walls

child releasing salmon fry“We’re talking about a classroom that’s going to be in this building here, and that’s true,” said Ross Davies, Education Coordinator for the Kanaka Education & Environmental Partnership Society. “But this whole place is a huge classroom. A classroom without walls, without boundaries or limits.”

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