Tree Planting Training 2010

O’Chiese Tree Planting Training

In July and August, O’Chiese Fist Nation in partnership with West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd and Rhino Reforestation Services completed a tree planting training program in the mountain forest west of Caroline, Alberta. It should be noted that the O’Chiese group was the first aboriginal nation to complete this type of program in Alberta and the following workers successfully finished the project and earned Tree Planting Certificates:

Tyrone Littlejohn, Steven Strawberry, Daryl Chipaway, Ricky Strawberry, Melvin Strawberry, Roberta Littlejohn, Jimmy Firth, Dean Strawberry, Julian Strawberry.

This type of employment is grueling and physically demanding and the workers did well to give O’Chiese a good working name within the Tree Planting field. Although the tree planting season is over for the year, at this time 6 of the graduates are working with Rhino Reforestation Services in the mountain region near Nordegg with chainsaws – bucking trees and splitting wood for firewood. Plans are also in motion to keep the graduates working using brush-saws and cone picking through the winter months. Overall, the program was successful and has built new business ties for O’Chiese First Nation as well as given the workers confidence in doing their part for the local forest environment.

Special thanks to the following individuals who without their help and efforts, the program would not have been so successful: Danita Strawberry, Evelyn Butterfly, Tom Daniels (West Fraser Timber Co.) Pierre Beaudry (Rhino Reforestation Services), Tim Gilbert (Rhino Reforestation Services), James Muhlbeier (Alberta Employment and Immigration), Alice Strawberry (bussing) and the entire O’Chiese First Nation Administration.

Submitted by Delmer Beaverbone

For more information and to see pictures view the September 2010 Edition of the O’Chiese Local Community Newsletter

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