Pathfinder Bat House Build

More often than not the incredible work of habitat creation and stewardship initiatives come from within our local communities. When this happens all we can do at HAT is smile with joy and share their story with the world. Here is the story of a small group coming together to accomplish big work written by Jill Marchand, Contact Guider.

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National Volunteer Week, Day 5 - Liz Belcher

The final day of our volunteer appreciation posts celebrating National Volunteer Week comes from HAT's Executive Director Katie Blake who would like to regonize HAT board member Liz Belcher for her considerable and deep involvement with HAT, and with conservation and restoration around Southern Vancouver Island.

HAPPY EARTH DAY National Volunteer Week, Day 4 - Alf Birch

It is a great pleasure to write this, and to have it published on Earth Day 2021! On the 4th day of National Volunteer Week, HAT’s Land Protection coordinator Barb von Sacken would like to celebrate Alf Birch. Alf is one of HAT’s most dedicated volunteers, and has found a way to get involved in nearly every aspect of what HAT does!

(Alf, centre, with partner Robbi Birch at the HAT Ice Cream Social, 2021) 

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National Volunteer Week, Day 3 - Matson Mattocks & the Friends of Havenwood Park

It’s with special dedication to the two HAT Stewardship Groups that have been meeting weekly for many years at two HAT protected areas – the Matson Mattocks who have been working at the Matson Conservation Area in Esquimalt, and the Friends of Havenwood Park (FOHP) in Colwood, that Wendy Tyrrell, HAT’s Habitat Management Coordinator celebrates Day 3 of International Volunteer Week. Together these groups clock in over 1000 hours of restoring these lands each year!

During the global pandemic we have found ourselves in, the HAT stewardship volunteer groups have not only continued to dedicate time in their lives to be in these natural areas, tirelessly doing the challenging and physically hard labour of managing invasive plants on a weekly basis, but they have also been the eyes and ears on the ground and the foundation of community building. Bringing situations to our attention and telling stories of discovering new plants, wildlife and community members visiting the park. 

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National Volunteer Week, Day 2 - Joanna Preston

For Day 2 of National Volunteer Week, Paige Erickson-McGee, HAT’s Stewardship Coordinator, would like to recognize Joanna Preston for taking a leadership role in volunteering and supporting Habitat Acquisition Trust, particularly through the organization of and extensive participation in Western Screech Owl monitoring since 2017. Joanna is a Registered Professional Biologist (RPBio) and works as a Wildlife Biologist for Stantec Environmental Consulting. With 15 years’ experience in Western Canada working on bats, songbirds, raptors, amphibians and more, Joanna brings a wealth of knowledge to HAT. Despite a full-time career, Joanna finds the time to volunteer her extensive skills and expertise to HAT’s Western Screech Owl Stewardship and Monitoring Project.

Reflecting on what inspires her about volunteering with us Joanna shared, "HAT made me realize I can contribute in a meaningful way to conservation initiatives and wildlife programs with real positive results. The HAT staff are awesome to work with and super knowledgeable…I've learned a lot."

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