Canadian Public Relations Society Recognizes Greenbelt Foundation’s Excellent Communications Program on the Significance of Protecting Nature
Near-urban nature, far-reaching solutions campaign supported the launch of Southern Ontario Nature Coalition’s Near-Urban Nature Network
TORONTO, June 8, 2022 — Greenbelt Foundation’s communications campaign Near-urban nature, far-reaching solutions to promote a Southern Ontario Nature Coalition (SONC) project has been honoured at the national level with two 2022 Awards of Excellence by the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS).
The Near-urban nature, far-reaching solutions campaign was a seven-month-long media and public relations program designed in 2021 to increase awareness and engagement on the importance of protecting natural environments surrounding our cities and towns."
The Near-urban nature, far-reaching solutions campaign was a seven-month-long media and public relations program designed in 2021 to increase awareness and engagement on the importance of protecting natural environments surrounding our cities and towns.
Last night in Winnipeg during the CPRS’ National Awards of Excellence event, the campaign was awarded historic Gold in External Communications and Silver in Best Non-profit/NGO Campaign. Established in 1962, the National Awards of Excellence celebrate outstanding public relations campaigns, internal and external programs and tactics, and the dedication and contribution of public relations professionals across the country.
“Meeting the challenge of protecting near-urban nature begins with awareness of nature’s benefits, including for mental health and well-being. We are thrilled that our campaign which highlighted the significance of near-urban nature has been recognized at the national level,” said Petronilla Ndebele, Director of Strategic Communications, Greenbelt Foundation. “We thank CPRS for giving us the platform to share our story with industry professionals, all the partners and our team who helped to make this innovative and unique campaign a success.”
The communications campaign included two advertorials, three social media campaigns, newsletter promotions, targeted e-blasts, an op-ed, media releases, an online information session for stakeholders and key audiences, and three published reports. Near-urban nature, far-reaching solutions told a cohesive story of SONC’s vision, receiving over 10,000 social media engagements and 334,000 impressions, 6,400 webpage visits, coverage in at least 10 media outlets, and 117 registrants – including dignitaries at all levels of government – for the Digital Information Session.
“The Near-Urban Nature Network is a ground-breaking vision worth sharing,” said Brianna MacLellan, Manager, Communications and Engagement, Greenbelt Foundation. “It was inspiring to work alongside teammates, colleagues, and organizations throughout the campaign who shared their experiences, answered difficult questions, and showed extreme care for natural areas and growing communities.”
In rapidly urbanizing regions like the Greater Golden Horseshoe, natural features surrounding and intersecting cities are one of our greatest resources for adapting to climate change. Comprised of forests, river valleys, wetlands, savannahs, and other ecological features, near-urban nature is at high risk of degradation and loss without critical conservation efforts.
A coordinated approach is needed to preserve and enhance natural systems and ecological connectivity while improving public access to greenspace. To meet this goal, federal and provincial governments consulted with the Greenbelt Foundation to support efforts, led by SONC, over a period of 18 months to identify needs and opportunities for a Near-Urban Nature Network that builds on Ontario’s Greenbelt and can serve as a model across the country.
Environment and Climate Change Canada and the Government of Ontario have supported the Greenbelt Foundation in convening the Southern Ontario Nature Coalition (SONC), a group of experienced provincial, regional, and community-based conservation organizations, land-based policy experts, and Indigenous consultants. The coalition includes Ontario Nature, Cambium Indigenous Professional Services, Wildlands League, Cootes to Escarpment EcoPark System, Carolinian Canada, Ontario Land Trust Alliance, and Ontario Farmland Trust.
Read the Near-Urban Nature Network: A Solution to Climate Change and Biodiversity Loss report for key recommendations and calls to actions.
To read the full news release issued by the Canadian Public Relations Society (CPRS), please click here.
About Greenbelt Foundation:
Greenbelt Foundation is a charitable organization, solely dedicated to ensuring the Greenbelt remains permanent, protected and prosperous. We make the right investments in its interconnected natural, agricultural, and economic systems, to ensure a working, thriving Greenbelt for all. Ontario's Greenbelt is the world's largest, with over two million acres of farmland, forests, wetlands and rivers working together to provide clean air, fresh water, and a reliable local food source.
Greenbelt Foundation Social Media:
Facebook: Ontario Greenbelt
Greenbelt Foundation Media Contact:
Director of Strategic Communications
(416) 960-0001 Extension 306