Forty students and their teachers from eight southern Ontario high schools will take part in a three-day field course focused on sustainable forest management in Algonquin Park.
The students, participating in Forests Ontario's Forestry Connects program, will be asked to challenge their impressions about sustainable forest management in one of Ontario's most popular parks. The program will take students through a historical exploration of logging in Algonquin Park to present day forest operations. Participants will interact with various stakeholders in the forest management process and gain a greater understanding of the challenges in balancing multiple needs and goals. The program also directly connects students with those working in the natural resources sector.
Since 2010, more than 100 students and teachers from southern Ontario have participated in the program. Now in its fourth year, 2014 will be the second time students will be travelling to Algonquin Park.
“Forestry Connects provides students the opportunity for hands-on experiential learning," says Rob Keen, CEO of Forests Ontario. “This program allows us to bridge the gap between youth and the environment and bring awareness to sustainable forest management. We are grateful for the continued support of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, as well as the Algonquin Forestry Authority, Ontario Parks, McRae Lumber, and the Algonquins of Ontario."
The schools participating in the program are Glebe Collegiate (Ottawa), Notre Dame Catholic High School (Ottawa), St. Patrick's High School (Ottawa), Russell High School (Russell), Ecole secondaire Marc-Garneau (Trenton), Pierre Elliott Trudeau High School (Markham), St. Marcellinus Secondary School (Mississauga) and Sacred Heart Catholic High School (Newmarket).
Forests Ontario formed in 2014 following a merger of Trees Ontario and the Ontario Forestry Association (OFA). Its mission is to increase the forested landscape across Ontario and bolster knowledge and appreciation of our forests through the support and promotion of forest restoration, stewardship, educational and awareness programs.