PRESS RELEASE: Children’s Educational Forest on Haida Gwaii Threatened by TimberWest Forest Corp.’s Logging Plans

12509469_10153829440158523_1744542913732077218_nPRESS RELEASE – For Immediate Release
January 12, 2016
Children’s Educational Forest on Haida Gwaii Threatened by TimberWest Forest Corp.’s Logging Plans

The BC government is one step away from approving a permit allowing Teal-Jones, a Surrey based logging company, to log a 16 hectare area on behalf of TimberWest Forest Corp. It is an area that more than 1,300 Haida Gwaii students have used for 10 years as an outdoor classroom to learn about the natural sciences, outdoor education, leadership, and forest stewardship.

The Mount Moresby Adventure Camp Society programs are part of the school curriculum in the Haida Gwaii School District, and most youth on the islands attend the camp’s Outdoor Education and week-long Forest Stewardship Programs. Local educators and parents are calling on the province to halt the logging plans that would be devastating for the future of the most highly used outdoor education facility for youth on Haida Gwaii.

Angus Wilson, Superintendent of Schools, explains the importance of this outdoor classroom to the youth of Haida Gwaii: “Mount Moresby Adventure Camp has been an integral part of the curriculum for all School District 50 learners. So important, in fact, that students return to it several times in their career for the combination of scientific, cultural, physical and social learning that it provides. To lose this safe, organised, and just plain fun resource would be a deathblow to Haida Gwaii student’s outdoor education opportunities.”

Dave McLean, a high school teacher in Masset says, “Students have told me that it [the camp] was one of the most significant, most defining events that happened in their high school years.”
“We live in a resource-based community, and we are supportive of the logging industry,” explains Toby Sanmiya, executive director for the camp. “We have a good relationship with Taan Forest, a local Haida-owned logging company, and we collaborate with them to deliver forest stewardship programs to our youth. We aren’t trying to stop logging, we are just asking them [TimberWest] to relocate this one cutblock.”

“The outdoor classroom that is the forest next to Mt. Moresby Camp is one of the few advantages our isolated schools have compared to schools with access to science centres, museums and industry tours,” explains Lorrie Joron, teacher, and former principal at George M Dawson Secondary. “They need this hands-on real-life experience.”

Speak up for the youth of Haida Gwaii and for this integral part of our islands!

Send an email to:Honorable Steve Thompson, BC Minister of Forests, Lands, and Natural Resource Operations:

Cc your email to:Honorable Christy Clark, BC Premier: premier@gov.bc.caHonorable Mary Polack, BC Minister of Environment: mary.polak.mla@leg.bc.caJohn Horgan, NDP Opposition Leader: john.horgan.mla@leg.bc.caHarry Bains, Opposition Critic for Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations: harry.bains.mla@leg.bc.caJennifer Rice, MLA for the North Coast constituency:

Please tell the above politicians that you want them to commit to:- Preserve this vital part of outdoor education for the youth of Haida Gwaii- Not approve the cutting permit for this one 16 ha cutblock.- Relocate TimberWest’s cutblock to an area of equivalent timber value
***Be sure to include your full name and your home mailing address so they know you’re a real person! Thank you!

For more information, contact Mount Moresby Adventure Camp at:
Toby Sanmiya (250) 626-9048

Please JOIN and SHARE the Friends of Mount Moresby Facebook page!

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