Aquatic Restoration Jobs Training Program Continues to Gain Momentum

Los Angeles, CA – Aug. 5, 2014 - The Waders in the Water program pilot continues as another youth corps received training and certification for climate-ready aquatic restoration and its members emerged with skills in aquatic safety, knowledgeable about installation techniques, and ready to provide business and government with reliable restoration for streams, rivers and wetlands across the U.S.
America’s Service and Conservation Corps have a rich history of training a ready and able workforce of Americans. Tracing their roots back to the Civilian Conservation Corps’ (CCC) founding in 1933 when America was reeling from the Great Depression with staggering unemployment, modern day corps like the LA Conservation Corps share the CCC’s original goal to conserve natural resources and provide hope and employment opportunities for young adults.
Drawing on the best traditions of the CCC, The Waders in the Water Green Jobs training and certification was built to support the goals of the 21st Century Conservation Service Corps’ (21 CSC) effort to put 100,000 young people and veterans a year to work nationwide protecting, restoring, and enhancing America’s great outdoors. Through the 21CSC, young people and veterans will accomplish meaningful work, and gain important personal and professional job skills while building a lifelong connection to the outdoors.
The curriculum was specifically designed by The Corps Network and Trout Headwaters Inc. to enable youth to enter conservation careers by learning how to improve the health, productivity and climate-resiliency of our streams, rivers, and wetlands.
Trout Headwaters President Mike Sprague said: “The positive feedback we continue to receive from our industry is very encouraging. Restoration project managers have told us they are eager to put these newly trained students to work on their projects.”
Wayne White, who spent 33 years at US Fish and Wildlife Service and is now Director of Business Development at Wildlands, Inc. remarked: “As someone who has spent my entire career perusing creative conservation solutions, the idea of training a national project-ready youth conservation workforce to help tackle the many environmental challenges we face really excites me.”
LA Conservation Corps Deputy Director Dan Knapp stated: “The LA Conservation Corps is pleased to partner with the Waders in the Water program training and certification. The program provides a strong benefit to the young people through job training and to the environment by improving the health of our waterways.”
The training is particularly well-suited for the LA Conservation Corps’ LA River Corps that is working to restore and revitalize sections of the river as the City of Los Angeles undertakes the ambitious project of restoring an 11-mile stretch of the river back to a sustainable and functioning precious aquatic resource with lush riparian buffers.
Trout Headwaters, Inc.
Trout Headwaters, Inc. is the industry leader in sustainable approaches to stream, river, and wetland renewal and repair. As one of the oldest firms in the industry, THI has pioneered approaches using natural materials and native vegetation that can reliably replace hard, invasive treatments that often damage our nation’s streams and rivers. Besides developing and refining new techniques THI is a staunch advocate for greater sharing of information and more consistent use of assessment and monitoring tools, providing greater certainty of environmental benefits to restoration.
Luke Frazza, Project Development, Trout Headwaters, Inc.
LA Conservation Corps
Founded in 1986, LA Conservation Corp’s primary mission has been to provide at-risk young adults and schoolaged youth with opportunities for success through job skills training, education, and work experience with an emphasis on conservation and service projects that benefit the community. It is the largest urban conservation corps serving over 8,000 young people a year. Since its founding in 1986, it has become a national leader in youth and workforce development and alternative education for inner-city youth/young adults. Their programs include paid
community beautification work in the Clean & Green program in addition to two full-time charter high schools where students can earn their high school diploma with an emphasis of becoming responsible citizens who will positively contribute to their communities and society.
Dan Knapp, Deputy Director of Strategy and Sustainability, LA Conservation Corps