Cedar Wood Bridge

Avalonia Wins Excellence in Community Engagement Award!

Avalonia Land Conservancy has received the Connecticut Land Conservation Council’s first Excellence in Community Engagement Award! The award recognizes accomplishment in the creation of connections to local communities, the region, and wider society, celebrating how collaborative relationships address community needs.

The award specifically acknowledges Avalonia’s commitment to establishing accessibility for people with disabilities in regard to trails, communication, and policy. From unique accessible parking to availability of documents in Braille, from sign language interpreted walks to intense outreach to disability action groups, Avalonia is seeking to ensure that the ‘open’ in ‘open space’ means maximum equal opportunity for everyone, regardless of disability.

Kevin Harkins, a blind ham radio enthusiast and resident of Norwich, records bird songs at Cedar Wood Preserve.
Second photo: Kevin becomes familiar through touch with Cedar Wood’s chimney swift tower.

The Council’s Executive Director, Amy Paterson, says: “Avalonia Land Conservancy is most deserving for its inspiring and innovative leadership in offering new programs, communications, and projects that advance inclusive conservation and accessibility, particularly for people with disabilities. Their work is a model for other land trusts and communities across the state to ensure that everyone has access to the benefits of nature.”

Read the story in the Day about accessibility at Cedar Wood Preserve in Norwich.