Toronto citizens have a long history of protecting and restoring our ravines. However, most stewardship activities require supervision by City of Toronto staff under the City of Toronto ravine by-laws.
Toronto Nature Stewards aims to take stewardship further – our agreement with City of Toronto, Urban Forestry allows for more ravine stewardship without direct supervision by City of Toronto staff. Instead, volunteer Stewards work under the direction of trained Lead Stewards. This way, we harness the power of hundreds of volunteers across Toronto.
How do I become a Steward?
You become a Steward by volunteering at one of our sites. Browse the map and schedule below to find a location that works for you.
Recruitment for new stewards is open for the 2022 season! (The Lead Steward for your chosen site will connect with you directly)
|Ashbridge’s Bay Park||Wednesdays, 9:00 – 11:00 am + Thursdays, 6:30 – 8:30 pm|
|Betty Sutherland Trail Park (new)||Sundays, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm|
|Birkdale Ravine||Various dates and times|
|Cedarvale Ravine (new)||Saturdays, 9:00 – 11:00 am|
|Cherry Beach||Wednesdays + Saturdays + Sundays, 8:00 – 10:30 am|
|Flemingdon Park (new)||Thursdays 6 pm – 8 pm|
|Glen Stewart||Tuesdays + Thursdays, 10:00 am – 12:00 pm, occasional Sundays|
|Highland Creek Park (new)||Wednesdays 5:00 pm|
|Leaside Park (new)||TBD|
|Magwood Park (new)||Sundays 10:00 am – 12:00 pm|
|Middle Mill||Thursdays 5:00 – 7:00 pm|
|Northline||Sundays (every 2 weeks) starting June 19|
|Prairie Drive Park (new)||Various dates and times|
|Raymore Park (new)||Various dates and times|
|Roxborough Parkette N.||Mondays 7:00 – 9:00 pm|
|Sherwood Park (FULL)||Tuesdays 8:30 am – 11:00 am|
|Smythe Park (new)||Various dates and times|
|Sunnypoint Neilson Park (new)||Tuesdays 7:00 – 9:00 pm|
|Taylor Creek – O’Connor (new)||TBD|
|Taylor Creek Park (new)||Various dates and times|
|Topham Pond (new)||Thursdays 9:00 am – 11:30 am|
|Weston Lions Park (new)||Various dates and times|
What do Stewards do?
Stewards work under the direction of Lead Stewards and meet regularly (usually once a week) to:
- Pick up litter
- Identify invasive plants
- Remove invasive plants
- Monitor ecological impact
Why become a Steward?
You will get a lot back from your role as a Steward! Skills & knowledge you will gain include:
- Identification and removal of invasive and native plants
- Experience building teamwork and collaboration skills
- Important problem-solving skills
- Volunteer hours
- Friendships with a community of like-minded people
- Opportunities for social connection
- Outdoor fun and nature therapy
Stewardship helps build vibrant communities. Working together with friends and neighbours provides the benefit of knowing you’ve made a difference to the state of Toronto’s ravines and natural areas.
How long is the stewardship season?
Our stewardship year begins in April and usually runs until frost in October or November.
Please note that the schedule for 2022 is subject to change.
We look forward to seeing you stewarding at a site!
Defining some terms
Lead Steward – A person who has completed the TNS Lead Steward training program and who can lead groups of volunteer Stewards in pre-authorized activities, at approved sites on public land, without City of Toronto supervision.
Site – Defined geographic area in a park or ravine that has been approved by the City of Toronto and stewarded by a defined team. Sites are natural areas (not groomed).
Steward – A volunteer who works to protect, restore, maintain, and monitor Toronto’s natural areas and ravines, under the direction of a Lead Steward.
Unsupervised Stewardship – Stewardship activities that are led by Lead Stewards without supervision by City of Toronto staff.