Green Teams Canada logo of colourful tree and name of organization

Highlights

  • 37 community members participated and contributed 122 hours total
  • 17 participants visited Rocky Point Park for the first time
  • 21 participants removed invasive plant species for the first time
  • Over 8 cubic metres of invasive English Ivy and Himalayan blackberry was removed (equivalent to the volume of about 50 bathtubs!), including stubborn blackberry root crowns which take more time to remove but take up less volume
  • Most participants came from Port Moody and the Tri-Cities, but we also had community members come from Vancouver, North Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Surrey and Langley!
  • One participant, Michael, rode his bike from Burnaby – wow!
  • We were able to enjoy this beautiful shoreline view of the Burrard Inlet!
  • Yummy refreshments were had by all during our break, including hot chocolate and coffee!

  • We found a number of items that don’t belong in our ecosystems including a tire, tennis balls and what appears to be a wire cooking rack.

Action Shots

Summary

On Saturday November 20, 2021 the Lower Mainland Green Team joined forces with the City of Port Moody to remove invasive English ivy and Himalayan blackberry from Rocky Point Park in Port Moody.

This wasn’t our first time at Rocky Point Park, with activities in the past 2 years taking place on October 24, 2020, March 8, 2020, November 16, 2019, October 26, 2019 and April 27, 2019. Click the dates to read summaries of all these activities! We are excited to continue our efforts to free this park from invasive plants to increase the biodiversity and resilience of this ecosystem.

It was a brisk but beautiful November morning with still water and no rain. As community members of all ages, backgrounds and experience levels arrived, it was hard not to take in the serene views!

English ivy and Himalayan blackberry didn’t stand a chance against these committed and enthusiastic volunteers, who cleared almost every bit of ivy and blackberry found at this site! We were SO impressed with the teamwork of everyone to accomplish what we did at this activity.

The spread of invasive species is expected to accelerate with climate change, and alongside this an increase in the frequency and severity of extreme weather events is expected to come. After the Southern BC floods seen the weekend prior to this activity, we were reminded that climate action needs to happen now!

But while climate change can be overwhelming, we are reminded through the incredible efforts of our Green Team that when we work together we can create positive change! This has also been wonderfully exemplified through the support generated by the wider community for those affected by the flooding and slides of the past weekend. Together we are stronger!

This activity not only had a positive impact on the environment, but on the participants themselves. By being out in nature doing something positive as a team, our community members:

  • Develop a sense of belonging to community and place
  • Have improved mental and physical health
  • Connect to nature, which leads to environmentally responsible behaviour
  • Learn about local environmental issues and actions they can take
  • Learn the value of bring together people to work towards a common goal
  • Become leaders in their communities
  • Increase confidence, resilience and perseverance

This activity followed the COVID-19 Safety Plan of our charity, Green Teams of Canada, and current province-wide restrictions with safety measures in place to ensure participants could connect with each other and nature safely.

Thank You!

Thank you to all of the hard-working and enthusiastic community members who attended this activity: Swetha, Eric, Kayla, Art, Glen, Cade, Brian, Jennifer, Solomon, Elena, Alexis, Jasmine, Vlad, My, Nutsinee, William, Sandiv, Katie, Kelly, Michael, Lia, Michaela, Riviana, Angela, Pat, Matthew, Aaron, Angel, Florence, Yui Hang, Thuta, Khin, Win Pyae, Kyaw Zin, Xioaxio and Jeannette!

Thank you to Cade, Swetha, Eric and Kayla for helping with set up and Cade, Swetha, Kayla, Michael, Jennifer and Alexis for helping with take down! Many hands make for light work and we appreciate your help so much!

A big thank you to Angela from the City of Port Moody for being our Community Investment Partner and making this activity possible through their financial support. We have been at working at Rocky Point Park with the the City of Port Moody since with 2014 and look forward to continuing our work together to improve ecosystem and community health!

What Volunteers Said

“Digging was fun and I appreciated the refreshments. It was very well prepared and organized. A small act for the environment that constitutes being a good citizen! – Rachel

“This was my third time volunteering with the Lower Mainland Green Team and I enjoyed seeing how much I improved at identifying Himalayan blackberries. This program raises awareness of invasive species and helps us connect to the place we live. – Katie

“I enjoyed the physical hands on work. I also really appreciated the ample amount of thick gloves and refreshments provided. There was also an encouraging amount of COVID-19 safety supplies. This program was a great opportunity to meet interesting new people and a welcome environment. Everything seemed very well organized and the organizers were very knowledgeable and inspiring. I think this program is doing great things for the parks and lands. – Elena

“I enjoyed the feeling of accomplishment after clearing out the designated area. It is very important in keeping the parks in the Lower Mainland sustained and not overrun by invasive species. – Glen

“I enjoyed the opportunity to work outside. The impact of this program is that it helps the environment and helps people get together outside. – Matthew

“I received a warm welcome and the people on the team are all friendly. In addition, tugging the invasive plants really helps release pressure. I felt the responsibility for protecting the environment as a citizen, and want to help out for nature improvement.” – Jianing

“I enjoyed Ashton’s enthusiasm! It’s a relatively small accomplishment in the grand scheme of what’s happening to our world, but even a small task can be worth it. – Patricia

“As a youth, I felt like it was an excellent way to get involved and contribute towards a better environment as well as in our path towards reconciliation. The impact is also greater awareness of the impact of invasive species on the environment.” – Thuta

It has brought to me a great understanding of the environment, but also what can I do to help the environment. Also helping the community, so everybody can get together to do positive things for the environment. Help each other out, help the community! It has a lot of valuable things, it helps people with mental health issues and it helps people tremendously by spending time in nature. – Brian

“I think any volunteering is great but among the others that I’ve volunteered, I think the wonderful job that Ashton’s doing here is just great. I like how organized it is.You get here on time, she’s always there to welcome you with a smile, she’s got a pretty nice schedule set out with a lot of flexibility so we are not pushing ourselves. Everybody knows what to do because of the trainings. Last time when I was a fresher, the first time, I came here looking lost, but I think I went back a little more experienced. Just that warmth that the group brings in and encourages everybody is wonderful. Did I mention the wonderful snacks she brings for us?” – Swetha

Before and After Photos

(click images to make them bigger)

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