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Toronto receives $5-million grant from W. Garfield Weston Foundation for parklands

The white swan pair at Grenadier Pond in High Park, Toronto, Ontario forage for food in the unfrozen water.

Peter Power/Peter Power/The Globe and Mail

Toronto's parklands will get a fiscal shot in the arm over the next three years, courtesy of a $5-million grant from the W. Garfield Weston Foundation.

The money will fund a range of new, as-yet-undetermined initiatives, with an emphasis on enhancing existing green space.

The project is being organized by Toronto Park People, a group comprising volunteers, city workers and others.

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Registered charities and community agencies, working in partnership with the City of Toronto and the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority, are invited to submit ideas, which should be directed to www.parkpeople.ca or through TPP director Dave Harvey at dharvey@parkpeople.ca. April 5 is the deadline for the first round of proposals.

Mr. Harvey hailed the foundation's gift as "a landmark private donation."

The W. Garfield Weston Foundation is a private Canadian family foundation created in the 1950s by Willard Garfield Weston and his wife Reta, through their shares in the family company, George Weston Limited.

The business today comprises the original baking company together with Loblaw Companies Ltd., a conglomerate of food retailing, processing and distribution companies.

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