Bear Aware's mission is to reduce the number of bear-human conflicts in communities through education, innovation and cooperation.
This reduction in human-bear conflict is accomplished by providing information about attractant management and providing education, and assistance about the tools available to secure those attractants.
Owned by the British Columbia Conservation Foundation, with funding support from various levels of government and private organizations, the Bear Aware Program works closely with municipalities, regional districts, local societies and volunteer groups.
Bear Aware is not responsible for bear management in the Province of BC. As such, all inquiries regarding sightings and the conflicts that result from humans leaving out their attractants, should be directed to the Conservation Officer Service at 1-877-952-7277.
How Bear Aware works
Bear Aware community coordinators work closely with the public, Conservation Officers, and city or regional district officials to find ways to prevent human-bear conflict. This means educating the general public about managing their attractants, but it may also mean changes to the garbage collection schedule, new bear-resistant litter cans and dumpsters, teaching people to compost properly, giving information regarding electric fencing, community planning to amend wildlife corridors or green spaces, and even helping other organizations manage unwanted fruit. Most people are eager to help find solutions which create safer, more sustainable communities.
Here is how Bear Aware community coordinators help to reduce human-bear conflict:
We make every attempt to engage the news media to tell the public about our program, the problems bears face, and about solutions to the ongoing conflict between people and bears.
In neighbourhoods where there have been long term problems or a recent concern, we come to you. With local volunteers we are able bring advice and skills to people directly in the conflict area. It is not safe to have bears in your neighbourhood; we can help you understand the measures that you need to take in order to keep them away.
Presentations and displays
We provide some materials to create relevant local presentations and displays for public spaces and events in your community. These include brochures, bookmarks, posters and other materials. We can also speak to your service club or organization with an informative and interactive slide presentation.
We offer programs for children at summer camps, in scouting groups, and in schools. These presentations focus on teaching children how to prevent conflict and how to act if they unavoidably run into a bear.
We actively seek out and train volunteers to deliver the Bear Aware message in their communities. Our volunteer program includes a written volunteer's policy, a registration form, orientation information, a handbook, and ongoing training. Volunteers are asked to keep track of their hours. Volunteer efforts correlate directly to the success of the program in any community. If you can volunteer, even just once in a while, please contact your local coordinator.