It is a true honour and privilege to recognize the valuable contributions, time and efforts put forward by a number of concerned citizens in Saskatoon. There is no denial, that we acknowledged in 2016 those who started the journey as Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and now it is time in 2017, to again recognize the stakeholders who have a vested interest in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. It is fantastic to continue to again recognize and appreciate the support of the stakeholders and interested parties who came forward in 2016, the interested groups and individuals have evolved and overlap into 2017, the support of all interested parties is truly appreciated. The Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is truly richer for their consideration and assistance. Commendations to these amazing people and groups who respect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, groups and communities in 2016 and 2017 and those yet to come. In no particular order….
The Montgomery Place Community Association are amazing stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Leslee Newman, President, and Trish Schmidt, Director, of the Montgomery Place Community Association, Ben Schmidt, Barb Riddle and all of its members have become stewards as well for the afforestation area, initializing the cleanup in 2015, and remaining on board to preserve the afforestation area, the ecology and wildlife habitat.
Jeff Hehn, Fatlanders FatTire Brigade (FFTB) Ambassador, and the members of this group are stewards acting in a protective service capacity educating the afforestation area community on security and safety and providing monitoring for a safe and secure area that the FFTB can bicycle in. The FFTB have also reached out to the community for “donations in kind” and engage in fund-raising for the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Trust Fund”, as well as offering their time in a volunteer capacity for the furtherance of the “Man of Trees“ winter trail network at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.
Ron, has continued his volunteer service to maintain the tracks and trails over the long winter months, providing a grooming service after the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is covered in a deep blanket of snow.
Constable Xiang community liason officer alongside officers of the Saskatoon City Police, have provided protective services to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The area is patrolled in person and by the air to mitigate illegal trespass.
Further to the protective services of the Saskatoon City Police, the Corman Park Police Service and the Sask Valley Regional RCMP Warman Detachment cluster have come out to provide protective services to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The combined efforts of these law enforcement personnel who are alert to the potential of crime provide a safe and vibrant community in the afforestation area. Citizens with such wonderful support are thus willing and able to look out for one another’s interests in the afforestation area.
The Meewasin Valley Authority as Stewards of the Saskatchewan River Valley have provided direction, and support in an enormous capacity as Verity Moore-Wright at the MVA has kindly partnered with the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area as financial stewards ensuring that all private and public donations to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Trust Fund MVA RSBBAA” serve to enhance and protect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area environment.
Additionally, Renny Grilz of the Meewasin Valley Authority provides wisdom, direction and guidance to the Stewards as an ecologist who has manages conservation areas for biodiversity across the prairie provinces and has a specialization in native plants.
The Honourable Hilary Gough, city councillor for Ward 2 in Saskatoon met with stakeholders who have a vested interest in this area of Saskatoon. Hilary Gough takes this ecological area very seriously, and was grateful for the opportunity to listen, reflect, and consider the information coming forward from a diverse group of individuals joined to support the afforestation area which was protected in perpetuity.
The City of Saskatoon very kindly supported the previous clean up efforts, covering the enormous tipping fees, and the charge of securing a Loraas bin on site. Additionally, following the Committee meeting of July 2016 and the ensuing City Council meeting of August 2016, the City of Saskatoon kindly placed out a number of Jersey Barriers on site to mitigate vehicular traffic. The City of Saskatoon currently includes the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, the South West Off Leash Recreation Area in the ongoing South West Sector planning. The City of Saskatoon Urban Forestry Program undertook a tree inventory to determine the health of the forest, and future direction in regards to the woodlands. Further to this, the City of Saskatoon is currently undertaking a City wetlands inventory, as well as they are writing up a formal report for the South West Sector and the “master plan” of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.
Valerie Martz, President of the Saskatoon Nature Society is very proud that the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is included in the new edition of their book, “Nature and Viewing Sites In and Around Saskatoon”. The public awareness of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, Saskatoon’s Best Kept Secret, is invaluable, and is currently the new direction forward being adopted by the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.
The urban foresters of the SOS Elms Coalition, “Save our Saskatoon” Elms are engaged, active and concerned supporters of this urban forest of Saskatoon, the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Their wisdom, and combined practical experience in regards to how to respect the afforestation area are truly appreciated.
Rick Huziak, representing the Northeast Swale Watchers and Candace Savage, spokesperson for the North East Swale Watchers and co-founder of “Wild about Saskatoon” support the efforts to enhance the West Swale wetlands environment and the woodlands of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The Northeast Swale Watchers are truly examples to follow and as his Worship, City of Saskatoon Mayor Charlie Clark said “generations from now, people will be grateful for the environmental reserve designation, intended to increase protection of the swale.” The past experience of the Northeast Swale Watchers has been a guiding beacon for the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area when it comes to protecting the West Swale and the afforestation area.
Chelsey Skeoch, Watershed Education Coordinator, South Saskatchewan River Watershed Stewards are very receptive to also working alongside the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area in preserving and conserving the biodiversity and health of the eco-system and wetlands.
Barbara Hanbidge who has been Ducks Unlimited Area Biologist, Education Specialist and Saskatoon Area Manager for Ducks Unlimited is an informed and supportive stakeholder for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Ducks Unlimited owns and manages the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area directly south and across the street from the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The 148 acres of land at the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area has flourished under Ducks Unlimited growing into an outdoor classroom providing educational programming on conservation of prairie wetland habitat. Chappell Marsh is a Class IV permanent wetland with its southern extension in the Chappell Marsh Conservation Area, and straddling Cedar Villa Road, Chappell Marsh continues on north through the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area affording a prime and well-developed wetlands habitat with emergent vegetation which supports unique and varied waterfowl. On consideration of the northern portion of Chappell Marsh, it should be an honour to support the conservation efforts undertaken by Ducks Unlimited in the southern portion of Chappell Marsh. The waterfowl are unaware of the human arbitrary title and water designations, the waterfowl are relying on a secure water habitat for foraging and breeding.
The Honourable Sheri Benson, Member of Parliament for Saskatoon West was very engaged with the direction that the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area were taking. Sheri Benson offered to check into the availability of any support for the concerns raised to protect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area at the Federal level.
Nicky Breckner, president of the Mount Royal Community Association was enthralled with the size of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. As a current off leash dog walker at the South West off leash recreation area, she was also very grateful that the City of Saskatoon was blessed with semi-wilderness habitat at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area and means to explore it further.
Megan Van Buskirk for the Saskatchewan Environmental Society realized that the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, truly sounds like an important area to protect and was glad to network with the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.
Penny McKinlay & Andrew McKinlay of EcoFriendly Sask, dedicated to promoting and protecting our natural habitat, are proud to support the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area and continue to keep up to date with the progress being undertaken at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.
Ross Harwood president of Cedar Villa Estates (Rural Municipality of Corman Park 344) is very supportive of the positive changes occurring in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area. Mandy Bellrose as the neighbourhood watch representative for Cedar Villa Estates regularly walks the adjacent Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area to build a safe and vibrant community and environment at the afforestation area. With an ebb and flow of information, communities, afforestation area users and law enforcement officials can work together for solutions in making the afforestation area a safe place to walk, to relax or to engage in recreational or environmental activities. “A trusted neighbour is one of the most effective crime prevention tools ever created. SPS”
The afforestation area is truly built on the strength of its stewards and spokespersons. David Kirton, the City of Saskatoon Off Leash Recreation Area liason for the South West off leash recreation area also recognized the bonding between the City, the afforestation area and SW OLRA community to reduce and mitigate illegal trespass. This is probably one of the most significant things that the average citizen as part of the larger community can do to lessen the risks, it is through such empowered citizens that community efforts resonate with success in building a safe and vibrant afforestation and wetlands community.
The community of off leash dog walkers, have been very supportive of the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The individual casual off leash dog walkers are very appreciative of being offered the opportunity to walk their dogs off leash at the south west off leash recreation area, and do indeed come forward to volunteer, to clean up, to engage in conversation in support of the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The walkers of the SW OLRA recognize the name sake of Dr. Richard St. Barbe Baker, L.L.D, O.B.E. and time and time again, they are impressed with the forestry and humanitarian work accomplished by St. Barbe, and feel honoured to be a part of the afforestation experience with a chance to view the diverse biodiversity of the area.
Murray Gross, YWCA, and as the local Saskatoon communications officer for the international festival Jane’s Walk came out to observe the civic minded discussion put forward by the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Jane Jacobs, author and urban activist, who believed that communities should be planned for the people by the people. “Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.” ~Jane Jacobs
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints has been a powerful supporter of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. Latter-day Saints missionaries serve in public affairs serving to build relationships with communities. The inspiration of the missionaries who came from across North America offering their time and talents made a dedicated commitment to come from across the land to meet in Saskatoon to offer compassionate service during the clean up effort. Thank you to the missionaries who provided to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area their multi-faceted humanitarian services.
Julia Adamson, resident of Meadowgreen, and SW off leash dog walker, SOS Elms Coalition, Saskatoon Nature Society, Nature Saskatchewan, Saskatoon Environmental Society and MVA partner as one of the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area came forward in January of 2015 to speak before City Council to save the forest and protect the environment in the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation area and its attendant West Swale Wetlands. Adamson also raised clean up funds for the Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Trust Fund, and contributed time and energy to the 2016 clean up, and subsequent follow up endeavours.
Since this time the community efforts to protect and respect the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area for our children and grandchildren have resonated with the heart of Saskatoon. Every instance when visitors and residents of the City of Saskatoon come to the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, they are amazed by the ecological bio-diversity, and appreciate seeing the biodiversity of the West Swale wetlands – the north end of Chappell Marsh and its associated tributaries and marshes- the Riparian woodlands, and the modified and native grasslands of the area. The various and diverse groups and stakeholders appreciate the co-ordinated approach being afforded by the City of Saskatoon, the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and the Meewasin Valey Authority (MVA).
The Stewards previously acknowledged as well as these groups and individuals listed above have all united as a group – the Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker – speaking up for positive change at the Richard St. Barbe Baker and embracing that the afforestation is preserved in perpetuity for the visitors and residents of the City of Saskatoon.
Saskatoon, truly shines with active groups and concerned citizens coming forward and taking action for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area. The response to the preservation and conservation efforts begun at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, and West Swale have been very encouraging.
The next action plan is to network and connect with citizens of the City of Saskatoon about the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area, the concerns of the many and several stewards, and the method going forward is to encourage all users and visitors to have a deep and abiding respect for the afforestation area.
There has been an amazing community response from several community associations as they also respect and support the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area; Montgomery Place Community Association, Parkridge, Fairhaven, Meadowgreen, Holiday Park, King George, Mount Royal, Dundonald Community Associations. The neighbouring rural areas in the Rural Municipality of Corman Park and residents of the hamlet of Cedar Villa Estates, also are very active and engaged stewards and stakeholders.
To everyone’s help, insight and knowledge, each word of wisdom, each hand offered to help is most graciously appreciated. It is with sincerest apologies if anyone has not been mentioned and their thoughts, insight and advice not noted at the website. Please drop us a line Stewards of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area if you have any further words of advice or concerns about the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area.
So with the greatest of thanks to all of those, past, present and future, who have taken to heart the need to clean the afforestation area, to protect the rich bio-diversity of the eco-system, to sustain the environment at the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation and who come together as a safe, rich and vibrant Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area community. Your further thoughts, words, and deeds are much appreciated. The afforestation area needs as many stewards to preserve and conserve this amazing site as is possible.
“If a man loses one-third of his skin he dies; if a tree loses one-third of its bark, it too dies. If the Earth is a ‘sentient being’, would it not be reasonable to expect that if it loses one-third of its trees and vegetable covering, it will also die? The trees and vegetation, which cover the land surface of the Earth and delight the eye, are performing vital tasks incumbent upon the vegetable world in nature. Its presence is essential to earth as an organism. It is the first condition of all life; it the ‘skin’ of the earth, for without it there can be no water, and therefore, no life.
Of earth’s 30 billion acres, nine billion acres has already become desert. Ancient wisdom has taught that earth itself is a sentient being and feels the behaviour of man upon it I look at it in this way: If man loses 1/3 of his skin he dies; the plastic surgeons Say he has “had it”. It a tree loses 1/3. Of its bark, it dies. Ask a botanist or dendrologist, and he will confirm that, and I Submit that it the earth loses 1/3 of its natural tree cover it will die. When its green mantle of trees has been removed the spring water table sinks. Once the rhythm of the natural forest has been broken it is a difficult-and a lengthy operation-to restore it. Much as you may want to restore the indigenous tree cover immediately it may require a rotation of exotics as nurse trees. ~Richard St. Barbe Baker
“This generation may either be the last to exist in any semblance of a civilized world or that it will be the first to have the vision, the bearing and the greatness to say ‘I will have nothing to do with this destruction of life, I will play no part in this devastation of theland, I am determined to live and work for peaceful construction for I am morally responsible for the world of today and the generations of tomorrow.'” ~Richard St. Barbe Baker
For more information:
Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, SK, CA north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city.
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page: https://stbarbebaker.wordpress.com
Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map
Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Facebook: South West OLRA
Off leash dog park Valley Road Saskatoon!
If you wish to support the afforestation area with your donation, write a cheque please to the “Meewasin Valley Authority Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area trust fund” (MVA RSBBAA trust fund) and mail it to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area c/o Meewasin Valley Authority, 402 Third Ave S, Saskatoon SK S7K 3G5. Thank you kindly!
Twitter: St Barbe Baker