(Photo: Metro Creative)

Young adults wanted to volunteer to stop the spread of invasive species in BC

Young adults aged 15-30 are invited to volunteer with the Invasive Species Council of BC Healthy Habitats project to help prevent the spread of invasive species in British Columbia. Volunteers will benefit from training and leadership opportunities while developing and enhancing skills.

“The Invasive Species Council of BC is looking for young adults who want to make an impact in their communities by collaborating with our organization to lead initiatives and events around invasive species management in the next generation,” says Gail Wallin, Executive Director of the Invasive Species Council of BC (ISCBC). “This is the first time we’ve put together such a volunteer network. We’re excited to provide training and mentorship to our volunteers, and to learn from their ideas and experiences.”

Volunteers will work in three regions in B.C. – Greater Vancouver, Williams Lake and Kamloops. They will work with experienced facilitators to address invasive species topics and issues. With notable and harmful invasive species such as giant hogweed and Japanese beetle affecting B.C. landscapes and communities, having a network of young adults trained in the prevention and management of these species will benefit the communities in which they live and work.

This volunteer network will have the opportunity to be creative as they use their skills to develop and implement projects they are passionate about to support healthy habitats and communities free of invasive species. Some project ideas include:

• adopting a local park, school yard or trail;

• restoration and clean-up of green spaces, beaches and waterways;

• creating public relations and awareness campaigns, including social media videos;

• community engagement and event planning; and

• designing and maintaining a web portal for the network.

The volunteers will also be invited to ISCBC’s 2020 Forum in Richmond, B.C., where they will plan for future sustainability of B.C. communities and landscapes for generations to come.

ISCBC is receiving over $500,000 for this project through the Canada Service Corps (CSC), Canada’s national youth service initiative. Now in its second year, the CSC provides access to service opportunities that enable youth to give back to a cause they believe in while gaining important life and work skills.

“Canada Service Corps gives young Canadians opportunities to get involved and make a difference in their communities,” says the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour “By partnering with organizations like Invasive Species Council of British Columbia Society, our government is promoting civic engagement while helping young leaders acquire important skills, develop individual strengths and gain essential life experiences.”

The Invasive Species Council of BC is dedicated to keeping our landscapes and communities free of invasive species. It provides a coordinated, province-wide approach to reducing the impact of invasive species in B.C. The ISCBC unites efforts across the province and collaborates with a variety of partners to develop unique solutions for the wide variety of ecosystems across B.C.

For more information or to sign up, visit: BCinvasives.ca/volunteer.

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