We are thrilled to announce that our fundraising targets have been met for the purchase of the Lower Perseverance Corridor and we are now in the final stages of a transaction which will result in the protection of 44 acres of land connecting the Cumberland Community Forest Park with protected lands at Comox Lake! This whirlwind 18 month land protection project is the 5th major purchase of lands by the Cumberland Community Forest Society since 2005 bringing the total of lands protected in the Trent and Perseverance Watershed to 545 acres.

This epic undertaking would not have been possible without the support of our incredible donor community. Huge thanks for our Leadership Fund donors who provided critical leverage for other fundraising. In addition, huge thanks goes to the Fish and Wildlife Compensation Program, Sitka Foundation, Aqueduct Foundation, Comox Valley Regional District (CVRD), Cumberland Centennial Rotary, Village of Cumberland and INCREDIBLE forest guardians like Harmonic Arts, Perseverance Trail Run and The Cumby.

This purchase story also marks the continuation of a special partnership with the Comox Valley Land Trust (CVLT) who were instrumental in securing matching funds from Environment and Climate Change Canada for this important land protection project. This $450,000 contribution toward project costs accelerated our effort and ensured we were able to resource the significant project costs associated with this unique acquisition. The CVLT is also a covenant holder on the lands the CCFS purchases and protects and they play a long term role in monitoring activities on the lands and ensuring the conservation commitments are honoured.

What’s next? The CCFS is busy working on finalizing this acquisition with Manulife and our funders (so many details!). We are also initiating environmental and engineering studies to support short term management actions and longer term planning for Perseverance Creek and the #4 Coal Mine Site. In addition, we are working with our landscape partners (Village of Cumberland, CVRD, CVLT) on public education about this project and the adjacent Comox Lake Conservation Lands (Coal Beach / Whyte’s Bay).

What else is going on? We’re busy! Between the Western Toad Project, Perseverance Streamkeepers and the Cumberland Bat Project the CCFS has been hopping this summer. We’re also engaged in projects with local schools and education programs to reduce human impacts in the forest and with the community to develop the capacity of the Perseverance Streamkeepers. We are working with the Village of Cumberland on several projects to protect our watershed and reduce ecological impacts in the Cumberland Community Forest Park. And of course we also have the 3rd Annual Fungus Fest coming up Sept 29-Oct 2, the Perseverance Trail Run October 30th and we’ll be hosting Fall Trivia on November 12th.

Do we have our eyes on other land purchases? Of course we do!

It has been an intense and exciting 18 months and we are so honoured by the support we have received for this project and our ongoing efforts to build community stewardship culture and protect drinking water, fish habitat, biodiversity, carbon sinks, wetlands, heritage landmarks and recreation corridors in and around the beautiful Village of Cumberland. Join us as a one time or monthly sustaining donor today! 

 

Photo Credit: Meredith Rose Photography