The Institute for Regional Conservation (IRC) a nonprofit dedicated to the protection, restoration, and long-term management of ecological biodiversity, was awarded $35,000 from the Community Foundation of Palm Beach and Martin Counties in 2017, to initiate ecological restoration work at the Lake Ida parcel, located in the northwest corner of Lake Ida Park.
Work on the 5 acre site was recently completed thanks to the funding from the grant. The funds were used to significantly restore native ecosystems by involving community members, reverse the statistic of invasive plant species outnumbering the native plant species, increase the abundance of native wildlife, and increase the interest of the community in environmental conservation.
According to George Gann, Acting Director and Chief Conservation Strategist for IRC, “Thanks to this grant, we were able to foster a community of advocates for restoring native biodiversity, and we have inspired continued work at the site from volunteers and the City of Delray Beach. We feel that our project has had a strong positive impact on the local community, which will continue into the future. Restoring native ecosystems is a long-term process that depends on community by-in and participation. We have gotten off to a great start with support from the Community Foundation of Palm Beach and Martin Counties.”
For this project, IRC worked with the City of Delray Beach and volunteers from throughout the community to restore portions of the Lake Ida Parcel. They coordinated six volunteer events at the site, where participants restored native biodiversity through planting native plants, removing harmful invasive plants, and picking up trash.