Wild Keeper Spotlight: Laurie

Wild Keeper Spotlight: Laurie
Meet Wild Keeper Laurie, who is based in Ontario, Canada and has been a Wild Keeper for 8 terms! That's two years and counting! From an early age, Laurie was introduced to the outdoors through her parents and grandparents. "They took me camping and hiking from a young age and as a result I grew up with a great appreciation for the natural world and preserving it," she shares. Presently, hiking and biking are her favorite ways to get out and experience the outdoors. 

Laurie's favorite local area to explore is Prince Edward County, "we are fortunate to live next to some amazing outdoor opportunities such as the 8 kilometre long beach at Sandbanks Provincial Park, a 46 kilometre trail called the Millenium Trail that spans the County, and a number of other beaches, waterfront hiking trails, and parks/conservation areas. There are some very unique natural features like the massive sand dunes at Sandbanks and beautiful Carolinian forests here."

An experience that has really strengthened her relationship to nature was "camping and hiking on the Bruce Trail with my parents when I was about 7 or 8 years old made a lasting impression on me. I remember my parents cleaning up some garbage we found on the trail and that stayed with me. The rugged beauty of the shoreline along the Georgian Bay coastline also has stayed with me and I cherish having these memories of time in nature with my parents as they have both passed now."

A cause she feels passionately about is the issue of microplastics in our environment. "This issue is huge in my estimation due to the persistent nature of plastic and the health impacts on all wildlife and humans. There needs to be a shift away from plastic as a material used in production of goods and governments need to do more to support this effort," she proposes. She also feels strongly about organic agriculture and supporting local small farms and CSA's. She reflects,"I think that this is important for creating more sustainable food systems and decreasing the impacts of industrialized farming."

Learn a little more about Laurie and her experience as a Wild Keeper below! 

Keep Nature Wild: What is your favorite thing about being a Wild Keeper?Laurie: That great feeling of keeping our local trails cleaned up, of doing something meaningful for our community and environment.

KNW: What has picking up trash outdoors done for you? 
L: It has been great to share with my husband and our grandkids. I may have signed up for this however they have really embraced the effort with me.

Roughly how many pounds do you think you've picked up since you became a Wild Keeper?
L: 209 pounds! 

What goals do you have for this year? (or beyond?)
L: To get more people in my community involved with cleanups. Would love to host a group cleanup!

Reading next

Wild Keeper Spotlight: The Kemp Family
Wild Keeper Spotlight: Caylah

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