Sustainability Leaders Embarking on 25-day Fraser
Seven emerging sustainability
leaders from across British Columbia are converging in Mount
Robson Provincial Park before embarking on a trip of a lifetime.
Meeting each other for the first time this Thursday,
July 16th, they will spend a few days getting
acquainted with each other and their mode of travel for much of
the trip—a Voyageur Canoe—before starting down the mighty Fraser
These seven individuals have been
selected to take part in the Sustainable
Living Leadership Program (SLLP), a hands-on educational
adventure run by the not-for-profit Rivershed
Society of BC.
Traveling the route of the
salmon, the program will take them from the Fraser’s headwaters
near Mount Robson to the shores of Vancouver 1,400 km away by
canoe, raft, shuttle van, and on foot.
During the trip, the participants
learn about sustainable living and responsible community and
resource development, while immersed in the impressive and
ever-changing scenery of the Fraser River. Along the way, each
SLLP participant is also designing a sustainability project to
implement in their community when they return.
The 2015 participants and project
ideas are as follows:
Lina Azeez, Maple Ridge
Moment”: bring the practice of yoga to the outdoors in an
effort to promote nature therapy and human well-being, as
well as engage participants in watershed governance.
Lota Colobong, Surrey
Work with the City
of Surrey on reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the
Maya Graves-Bacchus, West
A 4-day event
called “Place Based Activism and Spiritual Practice” to
connect people to land, sea, farm and city, and aims to
demonstrate what it means to be an activist in these spaces.
Christine Mettler, Kelowna
exhibit to showcase the relationship between humans and
their use of water in the Okanagan Valley. The project aims
to stimulate social interaction, reflection, dialogue and
debate about how water is being enjoyed, used, changed and
Work with the City
of Vancouver to reduce water consumption, plant trees and
significantly reduce waste/garbage.
Amanda Ned, Lillooet
experiences into educational tools for elementary school
students with aspects such as storytelling, presentations
Suzanne Senger, Gibsons
corridor conservation effort aimed at protecting the vital
100-mile stretch of the Fraser River between Lillooet and
For updates on the group’s
progress down the river, or to learn more about the Sustainable
Living Leadership Program, the participants, or their community
project ideas, visit www.rivershed.com .
Interview and photo opportunities
are available before the participants depart onJuly
16th, or at the stops along the river outlined
below. For more information and for photos and videos of
previous trips, visit the Rivershed Society’s website at www.rivershed.com or
contact Richelle Giberson.
July 25 – Morning hike through Ancient Cedar
rainforest, Hwy 16 near Crescent Spur
July 26 –Xat'sull
Heritage Village Cultural Day Celebration, Soda Creek (north of
July 27 –
Afternoon DFO juvenile fish net demonstration at Sheep Creek
Bridge, Williams Lake
Aug. 1 –
Bridge River tour / Cayoosh Creek Campground, Lillooet
Aug. 6 –
Morning tour of Glen Valley Organic Farm, Langley
Aug. 7 –
Lunch at the Fraser River Discovery Centre, New Westminster
Aug. 8 –
Paddle completion and afternoon arrival at Jericho Sailing Club,
To arrange an interview, contact:
604 992 4769
Change-Makers Wanted for Unique Fraser River Journey
The Rivershed Society of BC is looking for environmental leaders who are
up for the trip—and the challenge—of a lifetime. The not-for-profit
organization is inviting people who dream of starting, or who may
already be working on sustainability initiatives to apply for the
Sustainable Living Leadership Program (SLLP).
The SLLP is an eye-opening 25-day educational program that takes
participants from the Fraser River’s headwaters near Mount Robson, to
where it meets the shores of Vancouver 1,400 kilometers downstream.
Traveling by canoe, raft, shuttle van, and on foot, you explore
‘off-the-beaten-track’ parts of BC, learning about the geography,
biology and history of the landscape from skilled facilitators and
In the river’s upper reaches, participants hike through a 2,000-year-old
ancient cedar grove and paddle through the Robson Valley. In the Fraser
canyon, you ride whitewater rapids and observe traditional First Nations
fisheries. In the lower stretches, you visit a working organic farm and
paddle past log booms and big-box stores while learning about the
impacts of urban and industrial development on salmon habitat.
Team building, conflict resolution, communication and critical thinking
are an important part of the program. Throughout the journey, you
discuss sustainability issues, identify and build upon your own talents,
and develop a formal plan for your sustainability project.
Alex Ensworth, a 2014 SLLP participant, is almost finished his
sustainability project, which he undertook with his partner Katie
Furness-Moore. The pair are creating a photo-journal titled “Faces of
the Fraser” to profile people who live, work, and depend upon the Fraser
River. Their goal with the project is to raise awareness of the many and
diverse uses of the Fraser River, and to show how residents, farmers and
many other British Columbians benefit from living near it.
Natalya Melnychuk, another 2014 SLLP participant, is creating “Chase by
Choice”, a promotional booklet highlighting the lives of individuals
that have chosen to make Chase their home. The booklet will be used as
part of the welcome package for newcomers to the area, to showcase the
diversity of active and engaged community members from a range of
backgrounds to promote rural living.
When asked about her experience on the SLLP, Natalya said, “I would
definitely recommend the SLLP to other people. The SLLP has made me feel
more intimately connected to my watershed. The trip has given me a
greater appreciation of the diversity of people as well as flora and
fauna that depend on the river system.“
The SLLP, now in its twelfth year, is seeking applicants for the 2015
trip. Anyone with an interest in sustainability or community development
is encouraged to apply. To qualify, participants must be 19 years of age
or older and physically fit. Community volunteer experience is an asset.
The application deadline is April 30th.
This summer, spend three weeks exploring and learning about parts of
British Columbia most people never get to see—it will change the way you
look at this province and its most spectacular river system.
For more information or to apply visit:
Rivershed Society of BC