Happy New Year to all. I look forward to a very successful 2012 and thank staff and Board members for their dedication and hard work. Although we continue to struggle with finding appropriate sources of financing, we have had some recent successes with a number of funding initiatives still pending. Michele Jones continues as our bookkeeper but otherwise there has been a major turn over in staff and each new person is forging ahead learning and developing their new responsibilities. These new staff members include:
– Lauren LaBossiere – is our Estuary Coordinator and primarily involved with the Estuary Working Group. Lauren will be coordinating the 2012 Estuary Awareness Campaign which we hope will involve some partnerships with the K’ómoks First Nations. Keep abreast of this largest and most active committee of Project Watershed by visiting the Keeping it Living website at www.keepingitliving.ca or our social media page http://www.facebook.com/pages/
– Kathryn Clouston – whose role is as volunteer coordinator, and fundraising assistant, working with me and other Board members in writing grant proposals. Kathryn is also responsible for keeping our website up to date. She is doing an excellent job. Check it out at https://projectwatershed.ca/ especially the News and Events link to our blog. If you missed some events from the past year you can view them through the older entries link at the bottom of the page. If you have some stories or pictures of the estuary or other watersheds you would like to share send them to us at email@example.com.
– Steve Morgan – is the Business Manager of our social enterprise, the Mapping Centre. See web site at http://maps.projectwatershed.c
We also have a new Board member, Bill Heidrick who is involved with the Comox Valley Conservation Strategy and the Estuary Working Group.
The Board of Directors will have a meeting on March 4 to specifically discuss bylaw revisions and then after our AGM we will hold a retreat to deal with a number of important planning issues.
Project Watershed and its four major components, the Estuary Working Group, the Education and Outreach Committee, the Technical Committee and the Mapping Centre are all active and vibrant entities with developing programs and events. Stay tuned for reports on the Estuary Survey, the Blue Carbon initiative, research activities in the Puntledge River watershed and the Estuary, land acquisition along the estuary, a report on petroleum storage tanks bordering the estuary, mapping initiatives including sensitive habitat atlas updates, and news on our evolving walking map for the Comox Valley!!
The Annual General Meeting was a successful event with Dr. Paul Horgen being elected the Chair and two new board members added to the roster to complete the 2011/12 board. Details of the board member complement and committee assignments can be found on the Project Watershed website.
Since the AGM, there has been a restructuring of the Technical Committee into three to allow more focused work. These are: the Estuary Restoration and Protection Committee, The Project Watershed Technical Committee and The Mapping Centre.
The Estuary Working group and the Education and Outreach committee have been busy this summer and some of their activities are highlighted below:
The Education and Outreach committee has been conducting an Estuary residents/ businesses survey. They are asking about living/ working along the estuary. How familiar people are with the biology and the workings of the estuary and asking respondents what they consider major issues affecting the Courtenay River estuary. There will be additional subjective information in these exchanges and that will also be recorded. A representative 10% sample is the goal in order to do a complete analysis of the gathered information.
The National Historic Site Committee, a sub-group of the Estuary Working group is celebrating the recent major public event held on September 4th. Their goal is to gain National Historic Site status for the ancient fish trap systems in the estuary. The initial steps in this process were being celebrated on Sept. 4th with our partners the KFN.
Each of the committees of Project Watershed is featured on the Project Watershed website where you can read in more detail about their work and discover volunteer opportunities that are open to you. We invite you to become an important part of this vibrant organization and lend your hand to restoring, preserving and protecting our Comox Valley Watersheds.
We respectfully acknowledge that we live, work and play within the traditional territory of the K’ómoks Nation.
250 703 2871
projectwatershed at gmail.com