Raingers Rain Garden

Green Venture and the Bay Area Restoration Council have partnered to bring this new program to engage students and schools in the Hamilton Harbour Watershed through a hands-on, experiential stormwater management education program. From 2016-2018 the program will educate students about the natural and urban water cycle and demonstrate how stormwater is managed in their City. The Raingers program is free of charge and includes the building of one rain garden at each participating school as a practical and positive solution to stormwater!

What is a Rain Garden?

A rain garden is a sunken garden planted with deep-rooted native plants and grasses designed to capture, absorb and naturally filter stormwater. A strategically placed rain garden will intercept the flow of polluted stormwater and allow it to slowly infiltrate into the ground rather than entering our creeks and sewers. This will decrease stormwater runoff, naturally filter pollutants, and recharge our groundwater aquifers.  In cities the proliferation of hard surfaces interrupts the water cycle, preventing infiltration. Over 50% of rainfall becomes stormwater runoff – a serious and growing problem in urban areas – and climate change is increasing the frequency of moderate to severe wet weather. Today, a new era in stormwater management is dawning: managing rain where it falls, before it can run off.

Why build a Rain Garden at your school?

Rain gardens provide a perfect setting to teach about water quality, habitat creation and the impact of student actions on protecting Hamilton Harbour and its watershed. The plants in a rain garden have high tolerance for excess moisture and increased levels of nutrients often found in stormwater. These gardens can be a powerful tool to make connections among climate, land development, water quality, and personal actions. Students will understand how they are connected to the environment and local watersheds, as well as view themselves as active participants in, and stewards of, the environment around them and urban water quality.

As of December 2017 we have built 11 rain gardens within the Hamilton Harbour Watershed. See our Raingers in action:

Click here to see Hamilton’s Raingers program in action at St. Marguerite D’Youville!

Contact Us!

The Raingers Rain Garden program is available to any school in the Hamilton Harbour Watershed. Our acceptance criteria for the Raingers program is on a school by school basis. Since rain gardens are designed to capture water from impervious surfaces there is no one design plan that will work for all.  Every school will be different. Interested schools will require a site visit and possibly an infiltration test.

If you are interested in participating in this program or to find out more information about our Raingers Rain Garden program please contact Program Coordinator Laura Anderson at laura.anderson@greenventure.ca or 905 540 8787 ext. 158 or fill out the contact form below.


Interested schools from the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board please contact Elizabeth Peneycad, Facilities Management at epeneyca@hwdsb.on.ca with the Subject Line: Raingers Rain Garden Inquiry. Please answer the following questions in your email:  Name, Position of Applicant, School Name, School Address, Do you have a site on your school grounds in mind for a rain garden? If so, please describe.

About the Partners:

Laura Anderson, Program Coordinator, Green Venture – Laura is responsible for delivering the curriculum linked stormwater education program to participating schools. She has vast experience in action oriented community engagement and environmental stewardship education.  Laura has an Honours B.A. in International Development with a Focus in Rural and Agricultural Development.

Steve Watts, Manager of Communications and Programs, BARC

This program has been generously funded by a grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation.