Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario

Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario

August 29, 2011 11:00 ET

Government of Canada Supports Earth Rangers to Encourage Youth to Discover Careers in Environmental Science

WOODBRIDGE, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Aug. 29, 2011) - Thousands more children and youth in southern Ontario will be inspired to explore careers in environmental science, thanks to an investment in Earth Rangers announced by the Honourable Julian Fantino, Associate Minister of National Defence and Member of Parliament for Vaughan, on behalf of the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario).

"Our Government recognizes the importance of encouraging young people to study and choose a career in the environmental sciences," said Minister Fantino. "Reaching them at a young age will help to spark their curiosity and inspire them to become the innovators of tomorrow."

Through FedDev Ontario's investment of up to $1,108,000, Earth Rangers will now be able to bring programming to 785 school groups and reach 400,000 students through hands-on, conservation-related activities. Earth Rangers, an organization dedicated to inspiring and educating children about the environment, will also bring its activities into museums and science centres, such as the Royal Ontario Museum, and make its website more interactive, bringing science to life for thousands of youth.

"Each year Earth Rangers educates more than a million children about the importance of protecting biodiversity and inspires them to take action to protect endangered habitats across the country. We are excited and honoured to work with the federal government on this important initiative. Children are our present and our future and this initiative will not only inspire children to focus their studies in science, engineering, technology and math, but will also provide them with the education and tools required to be the next generation of environmental stewards," said Peter Kendall, Executive Director and co-CEO, Earth Rangers.

The investment is provided through FedDev Ontario's Youth STEM Initiative, aimed at encouraging students in kindergarten through grade 12 to pursue an education or career in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields. For more information about the program and Earth Rangers, please refer to the backgrounder.

FedDev Ontario was created as part of Canada's Economic Action Plan to support businesses and communities in southern Ontario. Now in its third year of operation, the Agency has launched a number of initiatives to create a Southern Ontario Advantage and place the region in a strong position to compete in the global economy. These initiatives are designed to support businesses and other organizations through partnerships and investments in skills and training; innovation; research and development; and increased productivity. To learn more, please visit www.feddevontario.gc.ca or call 1-866-593-5505.


Contribution to Earth Rangers

FedDev Ontario is investing up to $1,108,000 in Earth Rangers through the Youth STEM Initiative.

The funding will be used for the following activities:

  • Increase outreach to an additional 285 school groups and 100,000 students per year (from 500 school groups and 300,000 students currently). This includes providing students with close-up experiences with animals, educating them about endangered species and providing them with take-home materials. Earth Rangers will also develop a set of tools to help educators build environmental science into their curriculum to keep students interested in this field.
  • Develop exhibits and programming in five additional museums or science centres per year (from one museum currently – the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto).
  • Update website content with interactive features to attract children and youth to science-related careers. This includes the enhancement of Earth Rangers' children's blog the Wild Wire, which will feature interviews with young scientists working on environmental and conservation projects.

More information is available at www.earthrangers.com.

Youth STEM Initiative

FedDev Ontario's Youth STEM provides funding to eligible not-for-profit organizations to expand, enhance and coordinate the reach and impact of educational outreach programs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) for children and youth in kindergarten through grade 12. The initiative is designed to encourage young people to pursue further studies and careers in these fields, creating a future talent pool that is well-positioned to fuel business innovation and growth in southern Ontario.

Applications for funding are being accepted and assessed on an ongoing basis. For more information, please refer to the program guidelines available on the web site at www.feddevontario.gc.ca.

Contact Information

  • Gary Toft
    Director of Communications
    Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear

    Media Relations
    FedDev Ontario