Youth Continue to Give Back to Nature

Every summer youth volunteers work with CVC staff to learn about environmental issues and take action. After pausing the 2020 summer Conservation Youth Corps (CYC) program, teen volunteers were back in the field and they accomplished a lot!

CYC provides opportunities for youth to gain volunteer hours while working alongside environmental professionals and community partners in stewardship activities. These activities help improve our local environment by greening neighbourhoods, creating wildlife habitat and restoring natural areas.

Person watering small tree
Youth watering a newly planted tree.

Adapting to Change

We adapted CYC programming to comply with COVID-19 safety guidelines. Our staff and volunteers always wore masks, our gear was cleaned before and after using them and we worked further apart to get the job done. Despite these changes, teen volunteers were eager to learn and get their hands dirty.

From stream restoration with Ontario Streams, to pulling invasive buckthorn at CVC’s Conservation Area Parks, volunteers made a difference on the ground with restoring approximately 34,308 square metres and filling over 60 yard waste bags of invasive plant species. As well as restoring approximately 35 metres of Fletchers Creek with old Christmas trees to prevent erosion and stabilize the stream, and maintaining public trails.

Working with Community Partners

Long time partners like The Riverwood Conservancy, Ecosource, EcoSpark, POWER, Ontario Streams and Willow Park Ecology Centre provided meaningful and important environmental work including:

  • Removing invasive species
  • Maintaining community gardens and harvesting food
  • Restoring Fletchers Creek in Brampton by embedding Christmas trees into riverbanks to prevent erosion
  • And more

It’s because of the dedication of young volunteers that we were able to have a successful CYC program this summer. 135 volunteers put in over 2,400 hours to improve and protect our watershed.

Two people holding a tree above their heads.
Youth proudly displaying their hard work.

Get Involved this Fall!

Missed out on volunteering this summer? Join us this fall to plant native trees and shrubs in green spaces across the watershed at an upcoming Youth 4 the Credit (Y4tC) event. For more information and to register, visit cvc.ca/youth4credit

Youth can also join the Frontline program which runs throughout the school year. Teens gain environmental leadership skills and volunteer hours. For more information and to register, visit cvc.ca/frontline

By Emma Whilding, Crew Leader, Community Outreach

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