Gratitude and responsibility – two feelings I am left with after joining fellow staff, board members and volunteers from different land trusts across the country at the 2022 Canadian Land Trust Summit.
I am so grateful to be working in the conservation field, where every day I am surrounded by people who have big hearts and gentle souls. We are motivated by our love for nature and a desire to protect and preserve the gifts of the natural world for future generations. The outdoors offers a place for healing, for cherished memories, a conduit for better physical and mental health, a place to disconnect from a volatile online world and reconnect with their own thoughts and feelings, to reconnect to the place we all came from.
Yes, I feel grateful for my connections with all of you and with nature, and it is because of this gratitude that I also feel a responsibility. A responsibility to take care of that which we all value—the natural world. To give back to nature, to appreciate it, and to protect it. The responsibility to acknowledge that not everyone may have had the same access to nature as I have had through my life. I feel the responsibility to acknowledge that through Canadian history and up until the present day natural areas are being strategically and neglectfully made inaccessible to many, and I feel the responsibility with all of you to fight to change that.
And, so, as the days shorten, and the cold weather sets in, let’s share our gratitude for one another and for nature, and remember that the responsibility we feel is rooted in love and understanding.
After writing this, a new word is on my mind - “Action!”