Today’s young people are carrying on the work started by Roosevelt’s Civilian Conservation Corps, the 1933 New Deal program that put young men back to work restoring our nation’s forests. Current programs, such as Northwest Youth Corps, now provide tens of thousands of young women and men with job skill training through reforestation, trail building, and habitat conservation work.
Public agencies such as the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) are coordinating across jurisdictions to restore habitat, and they depend in part upon these youth corps to do the hard work of cultivating native plants and fighting back invasive species. So youth corps’ work provides the heart and soul of restoration work — the on-the-ground sweat equity invested in more resilient forests, streams and salmon populations that will pay dividends for generations to come.
This video from the BLM shows youth corps and Ecotrust staff in action working on the recovery of endangered salmon and steelhead, including work on Ecotrust Forest Management land on Waldron Creek in Oregon’s Tillamook County.
Kate Carone is program coordinator for Ecotrust’s Whole Watershed Restoration Initiative.