The Nature Guardians Program
Education has always been a cornerstone of Ontario Nature. We believe that young people play a special role in protecting and restoring wild species and wild spaces. By learning about the environment around them and taking part in meaningful conservation work, today's youth can have a huge impact on the world around them.
To cultivate the next generation of conservationists, Ontario Nature provides opportunities for young people of diverse backgrounds to experience and connect with nature.
The Nature Guardians program focuses on conservation activities, learning about the natural world and promoting community leadership. We do this through tree plantings, trail restoration on nature reserves, removing invasive species to help rehabilitate ecosystems, camping trips and hikes, workshops and more. In addition, we host the annual Youth Summit and offer membership on Ontario Nature’s Youth Council.
Feel free to browse through photos and descriptions of some of our past events and initiatives using the navigation tools on the left of the page.
Here’s the feedback we’ve received from enthusiastic participants
“During the Youth Leadership Weekend, I learned a lot of new skills that I never had before. I also developed some skills, such as coming out of my shell and speaking out to other kids. I met a lot of new people and developed friendships in just two and a half days. During this weekend I have noticed how strong my passion is for the environment and nature.” – Nikita, Ajax
“I enjoyed everything about the camping trip. The people I met and spent time with, the nature reserve, the beach, canoeing and the animals we saw… I thought they were all awesome! – Rio, Brampton
“I wanted to join the Youth Summit because I was a participant in the first Ontario Nature camping trip and I thought it was fantastic. I had heard about the Youth Summit from the trip and immediately wanted to join. During my times in Asia, I lived in big cities and didn’t have a lot of chances to explore the wilderness. When I came to Canada, I thought the best way to fit in was to first know the land here. The Youth Summit not only provided workshops that were educating but also some that included brilliant short nature hikes. It was also a great place to make new friends and meet likeminded youth. These opportunities made me further want to join.” – Ben, Toronto
“Learning how to snowshoe was fun and I also learned new information on animals, species and their winter tracks. I would love to become more involved with the Nature Guardians program.” – Charvel, Pickering
Resources & Links
- If you would like to read our Nature Notes for young people, click here.
- Want to join a Young Naturalist Club or start a club of your own? We can set you up with resources and contacts to get started. Our Junior Naturalists Manual is loaded with tips on how to start a club, ideas for activities, and other resources - you can access it for free online here.
For more information, please contact us at:
Sarah Hedges, Nature Guardians Coordinator
Tel: 416-444-8419 ext. 241
This program is made possible by grants from: