COQUITLAM, B.C., Nov. 23, 2021 – Coquitlam has earned another feather in its cap with provincial awards for its Parks programs and staff.
The City has been honoured with two awards at the provincial level of Communities in Bloom (CiB) – a civic pride and enhancement program – on the heels of a national CiB award in October for community involvement and the Community Support & Recovery Plan. At last night’s Council meeting, BC Communities in Bloom Executive Director Catherine Kennedy presented the City with awards for Volunteer Initiative and Community Champions via Zoom.
It was Coquitlam’s latest recognition at the provincial, national and international levels of CiB, a friendly competition between cities that encourages civic pride, beautification and environmental responsibility.
Park Spark Supports Volunteerism
The Volunteer Initiative Award recognized Park Spark, a program promoting community involvement in and care for Coquitlam’s parks, outdoor spaces and natural heritage, such as trees.
An example of this work is Park Spark’s garden volunteer programs, which encourage green thumbs of all ages to join in, share knowledge and make a difference while helping keep Coquitlam gardens looking their best. More than 120 volunteers were involved in the initiatives, such as:
- Year-round drop-in activities at the educational Inspiration Garden, where Park Spark and City Landscape staff work with volunteers in a variety of gardening activities and collaborate to deliver educational programs and signage, an electronic newsletter and more;
- Engagement with community horticultural organizations; and
- Youth Urban Garden Team, which provides opportunities for youth to meet peers and support their community with activities such as planting and maintaining City gardens.
In addition to these programs, Park Spark offers individuals, groups and businesses a variety of opportunities to enhance and care for Coquitlam’s green spaces and natural heritage, including park and trail cleanups, tree and shrub planting events, pollinator promotion activities, Adopt-A-Park stewardship programs, and park drop-ins for families and youth that blend fun with education.
Information about volunteering and other activities can be found at www.coquitlam.ca/parkspark.
Parks Staff Recognized
Coquitlam also received a Community Champions Award for the efforts of two staff members, Manager of Parks Kathleen Reinheimer and Park Operations Manager Wendy Wiederick. The award recognizes builders in the community who demonstrate enthusiasm and support for the CiB at all levels.
Reinheimer has served as a CiB provincial judge, board member and national and international program participant for years, while Wiederick has worked with the provincial CiB board and is a national and international program participant. Both staff members shared their CiB success stories at the 2020 National and International Symposium.
Coquitlam staff plan a variety of CiB activities each year as part of the City’s annual participation in the program. This year’s campaign focused on promoting pollinators and activities that encouraged residents to get outdoors and become involved in their community, including Park Spark volunteer activities. For information, visit www.coquitlam.ca/cib.
About Communities in Bloom
Communities in Bloom is a Canadian non-profit organization committed to fostering community pride, environmental responsibility and beautification. It uses friendly competition between communities to bring together local businesses, service clubs, residents and civic government to focus on enhancing their community. Coquitlam participates annually and has earned a number of awards at the provincial, national and international level. Learn more about the program at www.communitiesinbloom.ca. Coquitlam’s participation is outlined at www.coquitlam.ca/cib.
Parks Operations Manager
Parks, Recreation, Culture & Facilities