This week, Green Communities Canada's RAIN Community Solutions, a program delivered in York Region by Windfall Ecology Centre, was a recipient of the Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change 2015 Minister's Award for Environmental Excellence.
Windfall Centre has been delivering the RAIN program for several years, building rain gardens, providing rain barrels, de-paving hardened surfaces, and offering advice to homeowners on preventing water damage. Residential water problems can often result from how rain and storm water are managed on a property.
This award recognizes environmentally innovative contributions to such things as climate change resiliency. RAIN Community Solutions is a program that was created in response to the growing impact that storm water runoff and flooding was having on our communities. RAIN promotes three simple messages: slow it down, soak it up, and keep it clean. These messages are designed to promote activities that manage rainfall close to where it falls - installing rainwater harvesting and rain gardens, enhancing the urban forest, reducing impervious surfaces, and preventing pollution. The impact of these activities are: more flood resilient communities, fewer wet basements and mould related health impacts, increased green spaces, increase in the urban tree canopy, increase in local awareness of storm water management and an increased ability to sustainably manage water on private properties.
This successful program is delivered across Ontario, and demand for RAIN programs continues to grow. Windfall Ecology Centre is now offering 100 free RAIN Home Visits to residents of Newmarket and Aurora on a first come basis.