The three-year challenge which ran from 2014-2017, transformed the way parks are understood, funded and operated in Toronto. The Weston Family Parks Challenge has created a lasting legacy. Please note: This program is no longer active and applications are not being accepted.
Great parks are essential to Toronto’s health and vitality. They strengthen the community and provide environmental, economic and social benefits. With a commitment of $5 million over three years, The W. Garfield Weston Foundation launched the Weston Family Parks Challenge to ensure the long-term sustainability of Toronto’s parks. Building on the success of the first year, the Ontario Trillium Foundation joined in 2014 with an additional commitment of $1.125 million towards the initiative. Park People brings expertise and is administering the program.
The Weston Family Parks Challenge supports projects that enhance the natural elements in parks, engage a broad range of partners and the local community, offer new solutions to manage and maintain parks, and have the potential to be replicated in other jurisdictions.
The program is built around the following core elements:
- Nature focus – Enhances the natural elements of green spaces.
- Connection to community – Enables communities and organizations to come together to support their local park, encouraging stewardship at a personal and community level and revitalizing their relationship with nature.
- Sustainability – Contributes to high-quality maintenance and management of parks for the long term through community engagement, strong partnerships, and diverse funding streams.
- Innovation – Generates new park solutions, designs and partnerships that can be replicated elsewhere in Toronto and Canada.
The three-year challenge has transformed the way parks are understood, funded and operated in Toronto. The Weston Family Parks Challenge has ended and applications are no longer being accepted.