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City of Toronto announces PollinateTO Community Grant recipients

Press Release

Today, the City of Toronto announced the recipients of its PollinateTO community grants. Through the grants, the City provides funding of up to $5,000 per project for community-led initiatives that create or expand pollinator habitat on public and private lands in Toronto.

Forty community-led projects, including 16 projects located in Toronto’s Neighbourhood Improvement Areas, have been selected to receive funding. In total, more than 100 new gardens resulting in an estimated 7,500 square metres of pollinator habitat will be created through this round of grants.

Approved projects include schoolyard teaching gardens, community faith gardens, Indigenous education gardens, rain gardens, boulevard gardens and multiple front-yard gardens on residential streets, which will serve as pollinator pathways.

The funded projects will also engage and educate the community through a variety of measures including signage, workshops, tours, videos, seed exchanges, community planting days, Indigenous knowledge sharing, senior and youth programming, newcomer education, interpretive art and citizen science.

The grants are a component of Toronto’s Pollinator Protection Strategy, adopted by City Council in 2018 to support the more than 360 species of bees and more than 100 species of butterflies and other pollinators found in Toronto. Pollinators provide important services such as pollination, which allows plants to produce seeds, fruits, and new plants. They are also an important source of food for birds and contribute to the biodiversity in our city.

Some species are in decline due to habitat loss, climate change and other stressors. Native species, once lost, cannot be replaced. The easiest and most effective way to help native pollinators is to plant native plants. Native plants provide much-needed habitat that pollinators need to survive, as well as pollen and nectar for food, and places to nest and overwinter.

Since 2019, the PollinateTO Community Grants have funded 108 projects, including 30 located in Neighbourhood Improvement Areas, and 45 on school grounds. These projects created about 300 pollinator gardens with a total combined area of more than 21,500 square metres of new pollinator habitat — an area equal in size to about 3.5 Canadian football fields.

More information about the PollinateTO grant recipients and their projects is available on the City’s PollinateTO Grants webpage.

Quotes:

“Pollinators are an important part of a sustainable, resilient city and I’m delighted that so many residents are willing to create pollinator-friendly gardens in their neighbourhoods to help support and protect them.”

– Mayor John Tory

“In addition to supporting pollinators, these gardens will help to enhance biodiversity and beautify our city. I look forward to seeing more pollinator-friendly gardens across Toronto.”

– Councillor Jennifer McKelvie (Scarborough-Rouge Park), Chair of the Infrastructure and Environment Committee

Toronto is home to more than 2.9 million people whose diversity and experiences make this great city Canada’s leading economic engine and one of the world’s most diverse and livable cities. As the fourth largest city in North America, Toronto is a global leader in technology, finance, film, music, culture and innovation, and consistently places at the top of international rankings due to investments championed by its government, residents and businesses. For more information visit the City’s website or follow us on Twitter , Instagram or Facebook .

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