On Saturday, October 27, Grey Bruce Health Services, the community group NeighbourWoods North and volunteer tree planters gathered to unveil a plaque at the Owen Sound Regional Hospital to commemorate and recognize the many individuals and organizations who helped turn a seven acre empty field into an urban forest.

“Lloyd Lewis of NeighbourWoods North and Dr. Gord Edwards approached GBHS with a multi-year plan to naturalize the Owen Sound Regional Hospital property less than a year ago,” said Mary Margaret Crapper, GBHS, Chief, Communications and Public Affairs. “They said they would find the funds, secure thousands of trees, organize hundreds of volunteers to plant, mulch, weed and water the trees, and that they would have it all done by the Fall of 2018. They’ve succeed, and we are extremely grateful to everyone involved, and very proud of the result.”

The prolonged dry spell this summer killed many of the seedlings, despite teams of concerned citizens assisting in an organized watering program. Thanks to the NeighbourWoods North volunteers, another 300 trees, both big and small, have recently been planted.

“This has been a huge community effort. With the help of over 100 volunteers, GBHS staff and physicians, we planted nearly 3,000 trees of varying species,” said Lewis.

This project is phase one of NeighbourWoods North’s multi-year plan to naturalize the hospital grounds, which includes a network of pathways in the new forest for residents, visitors and patients.

The following companies, community organizations, and individuals generously contributed their time, expertise, equipment, and financial resources to this project.

  • Grey Sauble Conservation
  • The Tree Musketeers (Mike & Brian Nurton)
  • 50 Million Tree Program
  • Lennox Forestry Services
  • John R.M. Hanbidge (in memorium)
  • Kim and Dwayne McComb
  • NeighbourWoods North
  • Tim Keeling
  • Owen Sound Ledgerock
  • Home Depot Owen Sound
  • WillowStone (David Whalen)
  • Owen Sound Field Naturalists
  • Staff and Physicians of GBHS
  • Owen Sound Walking Group
  • R.F. King Excavating
  • Doug Murdoch

Media Contacts:

Nicole Schmidt, Communications Coordinator, Grey Bruce Health Services, 519-371-2121, Ext 2805, nischmidt@gbhs.on.cawww.gbhs.on.ca, @GreyBruceHealth

Lloyd Lewis, Chair, Neighbourwoods North, 226-256-8804, www.neighbourwoodsnorth.com