For the past three years, including this year, the IGA awarded the Quebec Labrador Foundation (QLF) a three year grant entitled “Training Youth As Citizen Scientists & Community Leaders Through Changing Times”. In this period the program has been widely successful on the Northern Peninsula and southern Labrador Coast.
The summer program provides experiential education and training in relevant environmental concepts and and skills to prepare youth as leaders for the environmental changes in next two decades. The changes that are impacting the region stem from climate change, a rapidly aging human population, and a challenging economic environment for the province. The program builds on the highly successful piloted first phase of the program and engages over 350 youth in the IGA region. In addition to the previous program structure, it includes an extended 3-5 day leadership session for 30 youth at two new sites, video recording of skills demonstrations using Facebook, and linking program stories and video clips to young professionals and QLF alumni through QLF’s Global Leadership Network. The program targets two age groups: youth aged 8-11 years and 12-18 years. The program emphasizes skill development and learning from local professionals in the commercial fisheries, forestry, wildlife, recreational fishing, and tourism sectors.
Last year’s team accomplished approximately 20 workshops for youth from St. Anthony and from Blanc Sablon, Quebec, to southern Labrador. One of the participants, Marcus Flynn (pictured below) from Forteau led a lesson on whales, without notes, that included something about everything on the chart! As of right now, there are many preparations in the works for this summers program. The interns have been hired, the materials assembled, and the school and youth group workshops scheduled for the 2019 Youth Leadership program by QLF. The team has went through training sessions, and the school presentations will begin in early June. They will also be back at the Point Amour light station for three days of teaching 40 youth from the Labrador Straits.