Four people are revving up chainsaws and getting experience in the forestry industry through a Job Creation Partnership with the Lower North Thompson Community Forest Society, thanks to $143,000 in government funding.
Participants are receiving 39 weeks of on-the-job experience working on a North Thompson fencing and trails restoration program.
Workers will re-establish and create trails, overhaul a local campsite, repair fencing, plant 2,000 tree seedlings, treat invasive weeds and maintain 120 geocache sites for outdoor treasure hunters.
During the project participants will also be gaining skills in working with chainsaws, computer mapping and GPS, as well as earning industry and WorkSafeBC certification.
Job Creation Partnerships are a component of the Employment Program of BC’s Community and Employer Partnerships, which fund projects that increase employability and share labour market information throughout the province.
To date, more than 340 job seekers have benefited from work experience and approximately 100 projects have been funded.
The Community and Employer Partnerships program is featured in B.C.’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint that helps align training and education with in-demand jobs and provides greater support to people struggling to gain a foothold in the job market or who face unique challenges.
Lower North Thompson Community Forest Society executive director Mike Francis comments, “We are pleased the Government of B.C. is supporting this initiative in our community. The participants are gaining valuable work experience in GPS and computer mapping, silviculture and trail restoration throughout the duration of the partnership.”
Project participant John Narcisse says, “This program is giving me the experience and confidence with power saws I need. I feel a lot more comfortable applying for a saw operating job now. I can also do maintenance and minor repairs to the saws now.”
For more information on Community and Employer Partnerships: www.workbc.ca/CEP