Awards and Achievements

Our projects have a solid track record of success.

Wordmark for 2015 Minister's Award for Environmental Excellence

RAIN Community Solutions program received the 2015 Minister’s Award for Environmental Excellence in the Non-Government Organization category. This award recognizes significant contribution and commitment to environmental protection in Ontario.

In 2014, RAIN received the Council of the Federation Excellence in Water Stewardship Award. This award recognizes outstanding achievements, innovative practice and leadership in water stewardship.

Celebrate Our Success

We’ve leveraged a diverse and far-reaching network of expert community service providers, many already working on community-level stormwater programming. The RAIN team and community participants have worked hard to achieve some great results. We’ve got the numbers to prove it!

Here are some of the highlights:

Connecting with Communities

  • Engaged over 15,000 people face-to-face
  • Held 150 special events
  • Organized 70 hands-on workshops
  • Conducted over 600 RAIN home visits in five communities: Kitchener-Waterloo, Hamilton, York Region (specifically Aurora, Newmarket and Barrie), Peterborough, and Calgary.

Environment

  • Diverted millions of litres of stormwater from storm sewers
  • Depaved over 1,000 m² of hard surfaces
  • Created rain gardens totalling 525 m²

Funding & Media

  • Raised over $2,000,000
  • Received 160 media hits

Celebrating local action by our member organizations

EcoSuperior

Thunder Bay, ON

Contact Info

EcoSuperior has two decades of experience delivering stormwater programming in their Great Lakes Area of Concern.

  • Launched Groundbreakers project in Castlegreen Co-operative (Top photo). Funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the project includes two municipal low-impact development installations along McVicar Creek and six green infrastructure installations in the Castlegreen neighbourhood, slated for 2017.
  • Coordinated the first annual Rain Garden Tour, showcasing five residential rain gardens installed with funding from the City of Thunder Bay’s Rain Garden Rebate Program, as well as two municipal low-impact development sites. The tour took place on September 10, 2016 with over 110 people registered
  • Delivered the City of Thunder Bay Rain Garden Rebate Program, resulting in 19 rain gardens installed on residential property.
  • Distributed pocket ashtrays to protect Lake Superior.
  • Delivered a storm drain marking program to grade school classrooms (Centre photo: EcoSuperior program coordinator Ashley Priem demonstrates a storm drain marking exercise).
  • Installed permanent markers next to curbside storm drains throughout the City Thunder Bay
  • Hosted a pet waste digester workshop in August at Central Natural Environment Gardens, EcoSuperior’s educational public green space.
  • Delivered a Low-Impact Design (LID) training workshop in November in partnership with the City of Thunder Bay, Confederation College, and Lakehead University.
  • Shoreline clean-up events, including waterfront walkabouts at Kam River Heritage Park in August, Fisherman’s Park in partnership with the Eco Divers and Recycle for Rescue in September, and at McVicar Creek in October in partnership with the Thunder Bay District Stewardship Council.
  • Annual rain barrel sales distributing nearly 500 rain barrels

Red Squirrel Conservation Services (formerly Hearthmakers)

Kingston, ON

Contact Info

Kingston was the first Canadian city to break ground in Depave Paradise projects at two sites, removing over 440 m2 of asphalt.

  • RAIN workshops on “Everything Drainage” and “Build your own pet waste composter”
  • Depave Paradise at Boys and Girls Club, October 2015. Over 20 volunteers depaved 105  of schoolyard and transformed it into a grassed and planted oasis.
  • Launched the Kingscourt Groundbreakers project and engaged the target community. A demonstration rain gardens was installed at the Kingscourt Free Methodist Church for the launch event (Bottom photo). The project is funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation and continues into 2017.

GreenUP

Peterborough, ON

Contact Info

  • 2014 Depave Paradise at Brock Street Mission removed 68 m² of asphalt
  • 2015 Depave Paradise at Wireless Solutions removed 250 m² of asphalt and planted over 730 native plants and trees
  • Launched Ready for Rain Peterborough, one of the three local Groundbreakers projects funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation. The project will continue into 2017 to engage the Avenues neighbourhood to find and install cost-effective on-site stormwater solutions, such as rain gardens and other low-impact development measures, to reduce runoff volume and stormwater pollution (Photo bottom: Dylan Radcliffe of GreenUP and Peterborough Mayor Daryl Bennett at Ready for Rain Peterborough, August 16, 2016).

Ecosource

Mississauga, ON

Contact Info

Ecosource is an Ontario-based environmental education non-profit serving youth, adults, and families. The organization works to inspire and support community action to improve our environment with a focus on issues of waste reduction, youth environmental leadership, community gardening & urban agriculture, sustainability education and local food programming.

  • 2014 Depave Paradise project at Russet Homes Housing Cooperative transformed a decommissioned basketball court into a community gathering space and a low impact development demonstration site, removing 176 square meters of asphalt and replacing it with native plant gardens and a permeable paving pathway.
  • 2016 Youth Rain Action Project at Sheridan Nurseries (Etobicoke/Mississauga East) provided youth with a hands-on learning experience where they attended workshops about stormwater management and designed and installed a rain garden, transforming 100 square feet of unused space into a state-of-the-art rain garden.

Green Venture

Hamilton, ON

Contact Info

Green Venture has worked on water conservation for 2 decades.

  • Demonstration features at EcoHouse education centre include three established rain gardens, two types of living roof systems, a gravity-fed rain barrel irrigation system, a grey water system, a permeable Turf-Slab driveway, Ecolawn demonstration, xeriscaping garden, an Ecoraster permeable pathway, and a variety of low-flow toilet options.
  • Downspout disconnection program in Hamilton 2009-2011
  • Hosted workshops on permeable paving, pet waste composting, and on adapting stormwater infrastructure to extreme weather.
  • RAIN home visit program since 2010.
  • Completed RAIN Home Visit program in Dundas, assessing 25 houses, with the courtesy of a grant from the Hamilton Community Foundation.
  • Depave Paradise at St. Augustine (2012) removed 93 square meters of asphalt and turned it into an outdoor green play space.
  • Depave Paradise at St. Margaret Mary (2014) removed over 130 square meters of asphalt from schoolyard and replaced it with over 650 plants.
  • Depave Paradise at RA Riddell Public School (2016) removed 58 square meters of asphalt (Left Photo).
  • Raingers Rain Garden program, in partnership with Bay Area Restoration Council, will build over 20 rain gardens in Hamilton 2016-2018.

Greening Nipissing

North Bay, ON

Contact Info

  • Working on RAIN since 2010
  • Five demonstration rain gardens
  • Depave Paradise event removed 49 meters squared of asphalt across from City Hall
  • Rain barrel and composter fundraising sales

Windfall Ecology Centre

York Region, ON

Contact Info

  • RainSaver project from 2007-2009 promoted rain barrels as a way to reduce phosphorus entering Lake Simcoe
  • Rain garden and pet waste composter workshops
  • Community-wide rain barrel sale

REEP Green Solutions

Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge, ON

Contact Info

  • Partnership with Kitchener and Waterloo for $1 million Showcasing Water Innovation project
  • Door-to-door campaign, community presentations, community events, hands-on workshops
  • Campaign targeting businesses and institutions with lunch and learns, workshops, best practice tours, demonstration projects
  • RAIN Home and commercial visits
  • Promotion of stormwater credit program of cities of Kitchener and Waterloo

Rideau Environmental Action League

Smith’s Falls, ON

Contact Info

  • Demonstration project at Rideau Ferry Waterfront

Environment Network

Collingwood, ON

Contact Info

Environment Network started working on stormwater issues more than 20 years ago as the Remedial Action Plan Citizen Action Committee. Their Great Lakes Area of Concern has since been delisted, but they continue to strive for water protection.

  • Depaved 35 square meters in 2013 to soak up stormwater with plans to remove over 200 square meters more
  • Planned bioswale at shoreline park in Collingwood to protect Georgian Bay
  • Trained over 300 homeowners to build and install their own rain barrels, 20 on building pet waste composters and 15 on building rain gardens in 2015
  • Depaved over 230 square meters at Hillcrest Public School, Barrie, Ontario in October 2016

Durham Sustain Ability

Oshawa and Port Perry, ON

Contact Info

  • Workshops on pet waste composters, rain gardens
  • Bus tour of the Lake Scugog Watershed focusing on stormwater runoff and the stewardship projects being undertaken to protect the lake

Elora Environment Centre

Guelph, ON

Contact Info

  • Project in development

Green Calgary

Calgary, AB

Contact Info

Water Conservation has always been an integral part of the programs offered at Green Calgary:

  • Over 15 years of annual rain barrel sales, where 1000’s of rain barrels have been distributed to Calgary homes.
  • Completed 100 RAIN home visits in 2014.
  • 2 Depave Paradise projects completed in 2015: Over 170m² of asphalt was removed and 389 plants planted at an old tennis court as part of a project to convert the unused site into a community garden; Another 83m² of asphalt was removed at a Pre-kindergarten school to give the children a green space to play!
  • 3 more Depave Calgary projects planned for 2016.