Building a Niagara Escarpment Biosphere Reserve Network

Is your organization passionate about preserving the ancient and majestic landscape of the Niagara Escarpment? Do you care about how we manage our precious biodiversity? Do you excel at being part of a group of individuals and organizations with a shared vision of ecological and economic sustainability?

If you answered yes to any these questions, please keep reading to find out how you can put your passion into action.

A May 2018 workshop, attended by numerous Niagara Escarpment Biosphere Reserve (NEBR) Network participants, saw the renewal of a project started in 2015. The goal: create a more collaborative and community-driven organizational model for the NEBR Network that is better equipped to coordinate and execute on-the-ground conservation efforts across the Niagara Escarpment.

This renewed project is benefiting from funding from the Niagara Escarpment Foundation (NEF). Since the 2018 workshop, the NEF—with support from the Niagara Escarpment Commission (NEC)—developed and submitted a funding proposal to the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation seeking further matching funding to support the project. The purpose of the funding is to hire a consultant who will provide the NEBR Network with expert advice, and to work collaboratively with Network participants on an implementation plan that will bring this new model into reality.

We are pleased to let you know today that the funding proposal was granted by the Greenbelt Foundation at the end of 2018, and the NEF awarded a contract to the successful consultant through a competitive process in March 2019. A partnership between two firms won the bid: Terrapin Social Finance and Good Roots Consulting:

  • Terrapin Social Finance, founded in 2014 by Stephen Woeller and Dr. Trace MacKay, is a social finance advisory firm based in Lion’s Head, Ontario. The firm’s focus is on research, program development and program evaluation with the goal of improving social and economic outcomes and organizational sustainability for their clients. More information can be found at
  • Good Roots Consulting, led by Principal Meredith Davis, is a research, strategy and evaluation consulting firm dedicated to supporting non-profits, governments and other social purpose organizations to strengthen their impact with minimal organizational resources. More information can be found at

Terrapin/Good Roots will spend the next few months working closely with NEBR network participants to review the work done to-date, to better understand the needs and aspirations of our community and individual abilities to participate in a future NEBR, and to ultimately offer their best advice on the model and implementation plan that is right for us.

It is our hope to keep you actively engaged throughout the life of this project. In the next few weeks, the Terrapin/Good Roots will begin connecting with both individual partners and the NEBR Network broadly to collect thoughts, opinions and feedback.

Should you have any questions or concerns, please contact Linda Pim by email at or by telephone at 905-838-0442. Linda is the lead for the NEBR project at the Niagara Escarpment Foundation and is a member of the NEF’s Board of Directors. You can also contact John Stuart by email at or by telephone at 905-877-7815. John is a Senior Strategic Advisor with the Niagara Escarpment Commission and is acting as the NEC’s lead for the NEBR while Lisa Grbinicek is off on maternity leave.