For the first time, Watersheds Canada will be bringing their Natural Edge Shoreland Naturalization Program to Manitoba. And it will benefit the Boyne River keepers.
Watersheds Canada, a non-profit, charitable organization was approved for $38,000 in funding from the Manitoba Habitat Conservancy through its conservation trust.

Chloe Lajoie is the National Conservation Director of the nonprofit charitable organization. 

"Just last year, we applied and received some funding from RBC Tech for Nature, and that's to start expanding and working with groups all across Canada. So as part of that, the Boyne River Keepers contacted us interested in becoming a delivery partner."

Lajoie shared the Boyne River Keepers are a keen group that's excited to increase their delivery in the area. "So we applied to the Manitoba Habitat Conservancy for funds to increase their reach in the area."

This is the first time Watersheds Canada will be working with the Boyne River Keepers, or any group or landowners within Manitoba.

The Natural Edge Shoreland Naturalization program is designed to work with waterfront property owners, and guide them through a naturalization or restoration program. 

"We recommend native species specific to their location and their property, and we do a site visit, create a planting plan, and help them carry out the entire restoration project. A lot of people are interested in doing a project like this. They're interested in all the benefits from having a natural shoreline, but don't know where to start."

Lajoie says the program was created to remove common barriers to action, and help guide people through the process from start to finish.

"Natural shorelines that are covered with native trees shrubs and wildflowers help to improve water quality. After big rainfalls, or snow melts, a lot of that overland water runoff will run directly into the nearby river, lake or creek without filtering out any excess nutrients or toxins. But if you have a natural shoreline, with lots of vegetation, then it really helps to slow that overland runoff, and filter out any of those excess nutrients an toxins resulting in cleaner water." 

Lajoie says natural shorelines are great for stabilizing shorelines and reducing soil erosion from occurring. She says a lot of people are beginning to realize the benefits of a natural shoreline, and how it can help in a flood situation.

Anyone within the delivery region who would like more information can contact the Boyne River Keepers.

~ With files from Candace Derksen ~