Since 2000 this innovative program has helped connect 1.2 million students to nature TORONTO, Nov. 21, 2016 /CNW/ - One of Evergreen's longest standing partnerships and largest educational initiatives, the Toyota Evergreen Learning Grounds (TELG) program continues to help Canadian students and teachers transform their school grounds into healthy places to learn, play and connect with nature. This year, the national program led by Evergreen with support from Toyota Canada and its dealerships, helped 559 schools with their efforts to green their outdoor spaces, engaging 48,245 students and staff. The TELG program is at the forefront of the school ground greening movement. Since 2000, the partnership has provided millions of dollars of support through hands-on expertise, training, publications and grants to over 6,000 schools across Canada, reaching close to 1.2 million elementary and secondary school students and 96,000 teachers and school staff. The scope of the TELG's impact inspired Evergreen to cofound the International School Ground Alliance in 2011. Green school grounds aim to inspire discovery and learning, increase physical activity, motivate teachers and students, and support environmental awareness and stewardship. Each project offers a unique opportunity for schools to engage with the greater community, including the active support role many Toyota dealerships have played in their local service areas. "Through this innovative long-standing initiative, students and staff each year have access to expert hands-on environmental learning and the unique opportunity to design and create their school's new outdoor space," says Geoff Cape, Evergreen CEO. "Toyota's incredible commitment to this work continues to encourage a life-long passion for play and learning in nature that builds a caring relationship with the natural world - a foundation for building sustainable and flourishing cities."