Youth Activity: Invasive Blackberry Removal – Sue Mar Park, Colwood

We had such a great time engaging students from Ms. McEachern’s, Ms. Gustavsson’s, Ms. Sinclair’s, and Ms. Bowen’s classes from Wishart Elementary School!

What a fun day we had connecting people to one another and nature, all while restoring habitat! Keep on reading to find impacts, highlights and more from the day…


  • 67 enthusiastic students, 4 teachers, and 1 teacher aid engaged
  • 73 hours contributed to habitat restoration
  • For many students, it was their first time removing invasive Himalayan blackberry as they had so much fun removing English ivy here last year! 
  • 4.4 cubic metres (about 27.5 bathtubs full) of invasive Himalayan blackberry removed
  • 185 square metres of habitat revitalized
  • Countless smiles, laughter, and stories were shared!


  • Students from Wishart Elementary have been able to take part in continuous ecological restoration and many of them returned with knowledge, skills, and determination to remove invasive species!
  • Last year, students removed invasive English ivy from this park (check out the blog from that activity here) and this year, students gained even more skills and knowledge by removing invasive Himalayan blackberry!
  • Students and passersby enjoyed the additional education and decorative designs provided by the plant signs, learning about identification in a fun, creative way!
  • We had a little friendly competition with largest root crowns!
  • We were joined by Colwood councillors David Grove and Misty Olsen! Thank you for participating in this activity and helping to inspire the students!
  • It was a very fun day filled with great teamwork and lots of enthusiasm!
  • We are so grateful to be back working this gorgeous park that is walking distance from the school! Many students pass through this greenspace walking to/from school, so working in and restoring this area was incredibly rewarding for them!

Community Investment Partner

A huge THANK YOU to the City of Colwood for partnering with our charity, Green Teams of Canada, and making this activity possible with their financial support and direction!

Together we are achieving our common goals and creating connected, healthy and resilient communities engaged in environmental stewardship.

Why We Do This Work

The Greater Victoria Green Team organizes hands-on educational activities that have a positive environmental impact to empower people. Through activities such as invasive plant removals, plantings, litter cleanups and more, we are fostering connections with others and nature so that health and well-being is prioritized, lifelong environmental stewardship is promoted, and community members are enabled to take care of themselves, each other and the places they live. We all have the power to make a difference!

We all experience mental and physical health benefits from spending time in nature, including reduced stress and anxiety, and improved mood, focus, memory and more. While doing so, we can also have a positive impact on the environment as demonstrated through this activity!

Staff Who Made This Activity Possible

Kaitlin (left), Severine (right)

 Greater Victoria Green Team Program Manager, Kaitlin Warren and Program Coordinator, Severine Tyszewicz, work hard behind the scenes to bring these high-quality activities to you.

Partnership building, outreach, social media, activity logistics, leading on-the-ground, reporting on impacts and more – they can do it all!

Severine was hired as part of Green Teams of Canada’s Youth Leadership Program, intended to empower the next generation of environmentally-focused community organizing.

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