Just about a year ago, SER-WC was getting ready to put on a large conference at Simon Fraser University, and we had worked hard reaching out to various sectors of the restoration community to have sessions on their particular subjects.
About six months ago, our AGM in Calgary was another opportunity to hear from researchers, consultants, urban conservationists and material supply companies. With these events, we aimed to bring the diversity of restoration practitioners together to learn from each other, and we heard a lot of feedback from people who were surprised and impressed at the scope.
It made me realize how lucky I am to have worked in all four Western provinces, in the agriculture, forestry, fisheries, waterfowl, parks and protected areas sectors. Often my job has combined being a government regulator, resource manager and funding program manager. My exposure to this range of restoration activities and practitioners made me naively assume others saw the tent this large as well, encompassing a diversity of people, roles and professions, goals and objectives, tools and techniques.
SER-WC represents that diversity, but often individuals may be specialists in one system or sector, like salmon streams or oil and gas perhaps, or they may specialize in one aspect of the work, such as fundraising, seed collection, site construction, scientific monitoring or government regulation. Our members are also distinctly clustered in different regions, like BC’s Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island and the Okanagan, and Alberta’s Edmonton to Calgary corridor, in addition to others across Western Canada. We recognize this presents both opportunities and challenges to connect.
Our Board is undergoing a transformation into more defined roles to help reach our current and prospective membership more effectively. In the next newsletter we will describe those roles, and we remain open to any feedback or ideas our members have for events and activities. Let us know what you would like to see, and we can help you realize those ideas.