Canadian Firefighter Magazine

Prince Albert Grand Council enhances wildfire response through Indigenous fire steward training

By Government of Canada   

Headlines News Emergency & disaster management Indigenous indigenous wildfires

Aug. 19, 2023, Prince Albert, Sask. – Canada is contributing $524,780 toward the Prince Albert Grand Council Indigenous Wildfire Stewards Pilot Program.

The contribution comes from the Natural Resource Canada’s Fighting and Managing Wildfires in a Changing Climate Program: Training Fund, a two-year training pilot currently being implemented with a focus on providing support to Indigenous communities and organizations to train firefighters and to better understand the needs and barriers in the sector.

A fully launched fund in 2024–2025 is expected to be informed by the best practices obtained from the projects under the pilot.

Through the Indigenous Wildfire Stewards Pilot program, the Prince Albert Grand Council is expected to increase capacity to prepare for and respond to wildfires, address employment barriers for Indigenous people and better understand the needs and requirements of communities impacted by wildfires.

A total of 320 existing wildland fire practitioners are expected to participate in traditional ecological knowledge training with Elder advisors, as well as train 125 Indigenous fire stewards through fire camps and fire guardian programs.

The project is expecting to see 445 participants receive training, increasing the number of trained personnel that provinces, territories and Indigenous communities can leverage to respond to wildfires.

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