International Youth Day 2023

Happy International Youth Day!

Students and youth are the lifeblood of our parks — we couldn’t do without them!

Here are just a few stand-out students and youth from around the province:

Lauren (she/her)

staff at exhibit

This is Lauren’s first year as a Discovery ranger with Sleeping Giant Provincial Park‘s Discovery program team. She’s got a huge heart and passion for the natural world.

Lauren loves being among like-minded naturalists!

Avery (he/him) Zander (he/him)

two staff standing back-to-back

This dynamic duo of brothers have several years of parks experience between them.

Their friendly, warm, and welcoming demeanour at Bass Lake Provincial Park‘s front gate is the gold standard of customer service. They can be depended upon to help out wherever they’re need whether it’s to serve customers or peer coach new staff.

Andy (he/him)

staff wearing high vis

McRae Point Provincial Park staff are so grateful to have Andy back as a second-year student maintenance worker.

Andy’s contagious smile and willingness to peer coach his fellow student workers has helped an almost entirely new team of student maintenance workers onboard and keep McRae Point beautifully maintained this season.

Ellen (she/her) and Derica (she/her)

two staff

This is Ellen’s first year with the Murphys Point Provincial Park maintenance team. She loves that she gets to work outside and help preserve and protect animals and their habitats

This is Derica’s second year as a gate attendant, working at Killbear Provincial Park last year, and Murphys Point this year! She says that the best part of her job is being able to interact with the public, especially kids, and share her love of the natural world with them.

Ria (she/her)

staff standing with exhibit

This is Ria’s first year with Ontario Parks and the Sleeping Giant Provincial Park team. She’s a Discovery ranger!

Ria’s keenness, appreciation and awe for all the life around her is an infectious joy! After work you can catch her biking the park’s amazing trail system on this amazing landscape.

Sam (she/her)

staff standing against evergreens

Well-travelled Sam came all the way down from her past summers at Nagagamisis Provincial Park and Fushimi Provincial Park to join the McRae Point Provincial Park team this summer and is widely regarded in the whole Bass Lake Cluster of parks to be the friendliest and most helpful employee!

Alex (he/him)

person holding ice cream

This is Alex’s second year working with Ontario Parks. He creates social media posts for the Park Ambassador Program, and drafts documents to aid in program delivery and outreach.

He also helps with customer service, managing bookings, and any other job that needs doing to keep the Park Ambassador Program running smoothly.

Lily (she/her), Spencer (he/him) and Grace (she/her)

three staff

Lily is in her third year at Murphys Point Provincial Park, and works in the office. Spencer is a first-year student in the park’s maintenance department, and Grace is in her second year with the Murphys Point store.

When asked about their favourite part of working for Ontario Parks, they all agreed that it was the friendships they form with their fellow staff members.

Amber (she/her)

staff wearing high vis

Returning student maintenance worker Amber is one of Mara Provincial Park‘s quiet leaders, who is always happy and busy keeping the park’s facilities clean and tidy.

Fil (they/them)

staff in high vis holding clipboard

Fil is one of our gate attendants at Wasaga Beach Provincial Park, and they are enjoying their first season with Ontario Parks.

They work hard to provide excellent customer service and are always happy to assist visitors in our numerous Beach Areas.

Their favourite part about working for the park is being able to interact with the many visitors, and hearing about their positive experiences in the park.

Lauryn (she/her)

First-year student maintenance worker Lauryn is right at home with just about any tool Bass Lake Provincial Park staff train her on, and her smile and enthusiasm no matter the task is hard to miss!

Molina (she/her)

staff next to sandwich board

Molina joined the Sibbald Point Provincial Park this spring in the Park Ambassador program.

She was quickly able to adapt to the new position making it her own. Molina has done a great job using her interpretive skills to get out in the park to new campers as well as campers who have been camping for many years (but might not have known how to be a camper).

Molina has a strong flair to adapt to other departments throughout the park and is looked up to by fellow staff members as a leader. Park staff believe that Molina not only has been an asset to Sibbald Point, but is is a true ambassador for Ontario Parks.

Jonathan (he/him) and Brock (he/him)

two staff on gators

Jonathan and Brock are two of our enthusiastic first-year students at Earl Rowe Provincial Park!

Brock enjoys working outdoors and Jonathan likes meeting all of the park’s amazing visitors.

The contribution of our cleaning staff is essential in maintaining smooth operations and creating memorable experiences for Earl Rowe’s visitors.

Charlotte (she/her)

staff repairing picnic table

Charlotte is a high-vis hero!

Quetico Provincial Park wants to recognize Charlotte’s tremendous work ethic and contributions to the campground this summer.

In the picture above, she is taking apart old picnic tables to reuse their metal legs. It was 36°C with the humidex. She was fighting off mosquitos and blackflies. AND she still somehow had a smile on her face!

Charlotte, your care and commitment does not go unnoticed. Park staff are so grateful to work with you.

Sophie (she/her) and Carter (he/him)

two ontario parks staff in front of banner

This is Sophie’s first year working with the Park Ambassador program, ensuring new campers have a safe and successful camping trip.

She is part of the webinar team, hosting a two-part webinar series that informs participants what they need to know before visiting Ontario Parks. Sophie thinks the best part of being a Park Ambassador is interacting with the community and helping people to have new experiences exploring all Ontario’s beautiful and unique parks.

Carter also works on the webinar team for the Park Ambassador program! He’s been able to travel to beautiful provincial parks, meet new people, and build connections through community outreach efforts.

Carter and Sophie have done a great job conducting many presentations to hundreds of people!

A huge thank you to all the student and youth staff who make our parks such special places to work and visit!