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Introducing the Ontario Children's Outdoor Charter

Backgrounder

Introducing the Ontario Children's Outdoor Charter

Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry

The Ontario Children's Outdoor Charter is an awareness initiative that encourages children to get outdoors to explore nature and discover Ontario's rich biodiversity by participating in 12 recommended activities.

You can visit the Ontario Children’s Outdoor Charter website to download and print:

  • the charter
  • an activity-tracking passport for kids
  • a poster to share with friends and family

Related Ontario Programs

Ontario proudly supports the charter with a broad variety of programs and resources to introduce children and their families to the charter’s 12 activities.

Follow a trail

Build an outdoor fort

  • Build a fort in your own backyard with found sticks and blankets from home – let your imagination guide you.
  • For a more formal experience, visit Quetico Provincial Park to learn how to build a quinzhee or igloo.

Explore a park

  • Every neighbourhood has a park, creek or field that you can explore. Find a patch of green and marvel at nature’s resourcefulness.
  • Step into nature at one of Ontario’s 270 conservation areas.
  • Ontario has more than 330 provincial parks. Find a park near you and enrich your experience by participating in a natural heritage education program. Parkbus also runs an express bus service to key outdoor destinations in Ontario during the spring and summer.

Camp under the stars

  • Choose your camping style: remote backcountry spots, comfortable group campgrounds with showers and flush toilets, or roofed accommodations like cabins and yurts. Ontario Parks has it all. Reserve your campsite online or by phone.
  • Check into the Ontario Parks Learn to Camp program for online tips and checklists, community training events, and guided overnight trips (complete with camping gear.) An advanced program allows Learn to Camp graduates to build on their new skills.

Go fishing

Play in the snow

  • Sample winter fun in a park or place not far from home, like downhill tubing and sledding, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and outdoor skating. At Arrowhead Provincial Park, you can try it all with onsite equipment rentals.
  • Check the Ontario Parks Ski Trail Report for snow conditions at the 20 provincial parks that offer cross-country skiing.

Harvest something to eat

  • Sample nature’s bounty at a pick-your-own farm.
  • Find out if there are any community gardens near you and learn how your neighbours are growing their own food.
  • Plant your own container garden and then go to Foodland Ontario’s Kids’ Corner for recipes and ideas.
  • Pour on the maple syrup at the Bronte Creek and Killbear sugar shacks each March.

Visit a farm

  • Pay a visit to a local farm to see how animals are raised, explore a corn maze, and talk to the farmer who feeds you. Check out Kid Fun On the Farm on OntarioTravel.net.
  • Visit Loucks Farm at historical Upper Canada Village where heritage livestock is raised, and food is cultivated using the traditional farming techniques of the 1860s.

Swim in a lake

Paddle a canoe

Observe plants and wildlife

Create an outdoor adventure

Partners in Development

The charter was developed through the collaboration of nine governmental and non-governmental organizations. The steering committee included:

The charter will be co-ordinated by the Biodiversity Education and Awareness Network (BEAN).

Media Contacts

  • Media Calls Only: Emily Kirk

    Minister’s Office

    416-314-2206

  • Media Calls Only: Media Desk

    Communications Services Branch

    416-314-2106

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