COVID19 Response

COVID-19 Response – July 21st Update

Although Stage 3 reopening will come into effect for the Niagara Region on Friday, July 24, 2020 we have made the decision to continue with our current set up.

Passive Trail Use

Weekdays 5pm to 8pm * Weekends 9am to 8pm

No access to facilities including washrooms

Last week we were pleased to announce a modified summer day camp for the month of August. In order to comply with Ministry of Health guidelines our property needs to remain closed during camp times to ensure the safety of our staff and campers. Our summer adventure camp is one of our unique offerings as well as a valuable revenue stream. Thank you in advance for abiding by our hours. Please note that we are taking this very seriously and persons or vehicles entering during protected program times are at risk of being charged for trespassing or having their vehicle towed – this includes vehicles that block our gates.

Thanks to funding support we launched several new supported outdoor programs in July for vulnerable populations as well as welcomed back some of our work experience participants. Check-in and check-out for these programs is through our main (north) gate. This means that the area directly surrounding the Nature Centre and the Nature Centre itself remain closed to the general public. Keeping this area protected is vital to maintain the safety of these programs which include:

  • Scheduled Trail Walks for Group Homes
  • ‘Forest Friends’ Fitness and Craft Sessions for Day Program Participants
  • Work Experience Program
  • Active Seniors Trail Walks

We value your friendship and are grateful for your support. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions –

Elisabeth Graham

Executive Director

COVID-19 Response – June 22nd Update

Welcome to the new normal at Heartland Forest – at least for now. This day has been a long time coming and we are excited to share how Heartland Forest is responding to Stage 2. It has been an emotional and financial roller coaster ride and we all know it's long from over.

Many of you may be unaware that we are a private charitable organization with no on-going government funding. At the outset of this journey we immediately lost 70% of our income. That's tough! We've made difficult decisions, we've made significant cuts and we've done all we can to protect the vulnerable populations we are so passionate about. Thanks to each one who has reached out with support during this challenging time. It continues to be such an encouragement.

Effective today, we are opening our trails for passive public use as well as meeting urgent needs by launching exciting new programs. This is worth celebrating!

We value your friendship and hope to see you soon. Please do not hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions

Click here to view our June 22 newsletter

Click here to subscribe to our mailing list
Elisabeth Graham
Executive Director

PS There are more announcements to come!

COVID-19 Response – June 19th Update

Thank you for your patience as we navigate the ever-evolving new world we are living in. Thanks to our funding partners coupled with the announcement we are moving into Stage 2 we will have an update for you within the next few days announcing Heartland Forest’s plan for re-opening. We have missed you!

Elisabeth Graham
Executive Director

COVID-19 Response – May 28th Update

Can we first say how sad we are to provide this update … it is with heavy hearts that we announce the cancellation of our summer adventure camp for 2020. The safety of our campers, their families and our staff is the priority. Full refunds will be provided to those who have registered. Please be patient as this will take a week or so to complete. If you paid online, the card used during registration will be credited, otherwise a cheque will be issued.

We do hope to open our trails for passive use weeknights and weekends in the near future. We have heard from many of you and know that visits to Heartland Forest have been missed. We are working on blocking off our interactive play areas and the area surrounding the Nature Centre so when we do open it will just be for trail walks with reminders to use your bathroom before coming!

Heartland Forest will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and will provide ongoing updates as needed on our website and through our social media channels.

If you would like to receive email updates please CLICK HERE to subscribe to our newsletter.

As you know, Heartland Forest is a private charitable organization with no government operating funds. We rely on donations, grants, events and facility booking and program revenues. Along with so many, the closure has hit us hard financially. You can help in many practical ways – visit our Nature Shop for hand-crafted items made by our special teams, make a financial donation or volunteer once we are open to the public. Your support is so appreciated.

Thank you for your understanding. From our hearts to yours – stay safe!

Elisabeth Graham
Executive Director