If you’ve been following us for the past few months, you might be wondering why we’re so focused on collecting water stories – what we call Watermarks. Why are we asking Canadians to tell us their strongest memories of water?
When we add a story to the Watermark Project, a few things happen. Mark said it best in an earlier post:
Watermark's are personal and powerful. Whether your Watermark is a positive or negative story about water, it is also valuable information about your environment, at a specific place, at a specific moment, with real people. In addition to being a powerful reminder of your connection to water, it also records and archives important information that can be used to protect water from future threats. Your Watermark is a ripple in a project intended to keep Canada a place where everyone and everything can safely swim, drink, and fish.
When someone establishes their connection to water, the ripples protecting Canada’s waters begin to grow. And that’s when the impact is noticeable.
Lake Temagami, Ontario - Kathleen Edwards
Kathleen pays tribute to Lake Temagami. The time Kathleen spent around the waterbody instilled confidence, enabling her to flourish into the successful musician Canada knows today.
Hudson River, New York - Jeff Franklin
Eight million people surrounded by water, but nowhere to swim. While melting in New York City’s summer heat, Jeff and his friends saw the inability to swim in the Hudson River as an opportunity. “What if you started by cleaning it piece by piece? And what if you could change how New Yorkers see the rivers, just by giving them a chance to swim in it?” And so started +Pool, “The World's First Water-Filtering, Floating Pool in New York.”
Great Lakes - Sarah Harmer
Sarah’s core connection to her natural landscape made her a staunch conservation advocate. As co-founder of PERL, Sarah’s most notable effort is her ongoing campaign to protect Mount Nemo and the Niagara Escarpment from development.
St. Lawrence River, Ontario - Mark Mattson
Mark’s Watermark is what drove him to become the Waterkeeper we all know today. Growing up along the St. Lawrence River instilled a deep appreciation into Mark, enabling him to feel protective over the shores he loved. When Mark saw sewage harming his Watermark, he was compelled to act. Today, he is not only the Waterkeeper for Brophy’s Point, but for Lake Ontario’s watershed.
These are just a few stories that show what can happen when real people are aware of their connection to water. Take a look at some other Watermarks. Some ripples are big and some are small, but they all make a difference.
When people know their connection – when people know their Watermark – great things happen. But it all starts with the individual. It all starts with you.
Contribute your story to the Watermark Project. Protect the waters you love. Share your Watermark today.