Submitted by the Ministry of Forests and Range–The idea of providing teens with hands on experience in industries where they may end up focusing their future careers has always been a good one and, in the summer of 2005, the Ministry of Forests and Range was pleased to successfully launch a new program focused on bringing this idea to life.
Thanks to a grant from the South Moresby Forest Replacement Account (SMFRA), the Ministry of Forests and Range was able to offer four local high school students the opportunity to experience a variety of aspects of Queen Charlotte Islands resource management
Stacey Shantz, Isabel Moody, Tysen Husband and Ashley Crosby spent six weeks working on trails, recreation sites and job shadowing. Program highlights included a trip to Gwaii Haanas to work on the Windy Bay trail, exposure to operational logging and life in camp at Eden Lake, bird banding on Limestone Island and forest exploration with the Haida Heritage Forest Guardians.
Len Munt, District Manager, Ministry of Forests and Range said “the program was designed to go beyond simply providing employment. This experience allowed the students to acquire navigation, plant identification and trail and site maintenance skills. They were also able to contribute to their community through their work on the recreation sites in Rennell Sound and Gray Bay. Ultimately I believe they gained a deeper understanding of how natural resources are managed on the Queen Charlotte Islands.”
At the end of the program, participating student, Isabel Moody said “…I learned a lot about our island and a lot about what everyone else does to help out…”. Ashley Crosby said that she had “… been to so may places on this island that I had never been before.”
The Ministry of Forests and Range is proud of the students who participated in the program and applauds the support of the community and other organizations including the Haida Gwaii Youth Society and SMFRA as well as the Haida Heritage Forest Guardians, Husby Forest Products, Parks Canada, the Island Hikers Association, The Teal Jones Group, the Tlell Watershed Society, Haida Fisheries, Laskeek Bay and Marine Matters.
The program has been deemed a “win-win” by participants and observers alike. The Ministry of Forests and Range looks forward to continuing the program for the summer of 2006.
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