The Quetico Foundation Celebrates 50 Years of Wilderness Protection

The Quetico Foundation came into being in 1954 with the encouragement and support of the Quetico Superior Foundation. It is dedicated to the protection of Quetico Provincial Park and other wilderness parks in Ontario. Although the focus has primarily been on Quetico, the Foundation has played a significant role in the establishment and protection of other wilderness parks such as Polar Bear, Killarney, Woodland Caribou, Opasquia, Kesagami, Wabakimi, and Lady Evelyn-Smoothwater. In addition to liaison with conservation organizations in Canada, the Foundation maintains a close relationship with the Quetico Superior Foundation, Wilderness Research Foundation, Friends of the Boundary Waters Wilderness and Voyageurs Region National Park Association in the U.S.A. related to enhancing the protection and stewardship of the Quetico-Superior ecosystem.

For 50 years, The Quetico Foundation has undertaken to educate the public and to work cooperatively with the Ontario government and other organizations to protect the values of wilderness parks in Ontario. Over the years, the Foundation has supported a variety of research and educational projects such as publishing our newsletter, The QUETICO, planting a disease resistant variety of white pine, establishing the John B. Ridley Research Library at Quetico Provincial Park and awarding the Shan Walshe Memorial Award.

In 1997, the Summer Student Research Program was initiated to hire high school, college, and university students from Atikokan and the Lac La Croix First Nation to conduct research in Quetico. Funding for the program has been provided by the Quetico Superior Foundation. The Quetico Foundation takes a leading role in ensuring that our natural heritage is protected for present and future generations.

The reasoned, rational and science-based approach of the Foundation has given it a strong voice and the ability to work cooperatively with government agencies and nonprofit organizations on both sides of the Canada-United States border to protect the wilderness character of the region.

Even with an investment of more than $500,000.00 in Quetico in the last decade alone, The Quetico Foundation sees the need for an ever-increasing effort to sustain the Park as one of the few quiet places left in the world. As a result, the Foundation has established its first membership program. Already, a number of people from the United States have become members. Since over 85 percent of the visitors to Quetico are American, your support as members will become a vital component in the success of our projects for the benefit of present and future generations. Many visitors, enriched by their Quetico experience have wanted to give something back. Now, you can!

Your membership will help put wilderness protection first. Make an investment in the future of Quetico Provincial Park by becoming a member of The Quetico Foundation. Information about The Quetico Foundation Membership Program and Application Form is available on the Foundation’s Website:

This article appeared in Wilderness News Summer 2004

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