Friends of Springwater Provincial Park: their financial record

This is the statement that the “Friends of Springwater Provincial Park” posted on their Facebook page on October 31, 2012.

Friends of Springwater fs

I was asked my professional opinion of it by an executive of the most influential citizens’ advocacy group in Simcoe County. She was kind enough to hand me a hard copy while I was sitting in the same row of chairs at a meeting with a gentleman who introduced himself as the Deputy Warden of the County of Simcoe.

I BELIEVE! I smiled.

After checking with a few other fellow cash donors, I no longer smile.

Mr. Ian Taylor self-identifies as the founder of this (“not-for profit”, my error of assumption: see Mr. Taylor’s comment) for profit group.

The Springwater Park Citizens’ Coalition, SPCC has not been or ever will be associated with this person or group.

Les Stewart, President, SPCC


5 Responses to Friends of Springwater Provincial Park: their financial record

  1. Jerome Lediard says:

    If you have proof a profit is being taken then make it known. All you have done so far is slander a person who appears to be (selflessly) working hard at saving Springwater park. This type of behaviour makes me suspicious of your motives.


  2. Tim Rice says:

    Just because they haven’t yet acheived non-profit status does make this a “for-profit” group. Why all this bad blood? Aren’t you guys working for the same goal?


  3. Kimberly says:

    There were a lot of disgruntled donors when their financial records were posted. The Friends spent donated money on gas and park passes… really? All of the guests who attended their event to donate money paid for their own gas and park pass. Then they posted nasty commentary about the Springwater Park CC, but refused to give out the name of the ‘other’ group. This was after they openly threatened to sue people who raised questions about where the money was going. The “Friends” are the unfriendliest group I have ever seen so it’s not surprising that they have totally alienated most of their group. This is an excerpt of an email that I got from a random facebooker who saw the discussion that Ian and myself had regarding finances and the ‘other’ group, before those comments were deleted, “My boyfriend and I are not pleased with the “leadership” of this group, and are absolutely disgusted that he’s using donated funds to pay for his entrance to the park in addition to his gas.”


  4. Hilda Stock says:

    Hello, I am new to all of this and not affiliated with either group, but as a citizen, it does look odd to see open quarreling between the two groups concerned with the same issue. The MNR must be chuckling about this is all I can say. I think we should all focus on what we have in common – a love for Springwater Provincial Park and a desire to keep it open.

    I work for a nonprofit organization in Barrie and it is in fact true – it takes time to set up a nonprofit – you can’t immediately declare yourself as one but you must fulfill certain requirements first with the Ontario gov’t. It is normal to require a bit of seed money to get started. Let’s be patient; let’s be kind to one another and let’s support each other in this important cause. Sincere regards and best wishes to all from a newbie, Hilda.


    • Les Stewart says:


      I don’t consider it odd at all that there are two, three or a dozen approaches to solving this problem.

      Individuals have different levels of education, career accomplishments, time in the community, standing within the business elite, knowledge of the park, value relationship building with known advocates, First Nations sensitivity, government relations experience, leadership training, not for-profit and fundraising experience, etc. If these differences are so great so as to make unity impossible, that’s just the way it is.

      Every new effort looks much “messier” than established movements. Take a look at Idle No More. Whomever is left standing, gets to write the movement’s history.

      Which is precisely what the individuals who choose to work with the Springwater Park Citizens’ Coalition are doing: writing the history of Springwater Park.


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