Just over one year after first meeting with the youth in the Tseshaht First Nation in Port Alberni, British Columbia to develop ideas for community projects, Brodie Team's Amber Zirnhelt is proudly able to show off a mountain bike skills area and trail near the youth center.
The work was conducted as part of the University of British Columbia's Coastal Community Project. Zirnhelt drew upon the expertise of Jay Hoots in designing and developing the program. Hoots had previously done summer youth work programs "with the Dirt Club, a non-profit in North Vancouver designed to assist kids in working with local municipalities to build bike parks" according to Zirnhelt.
"As part of the program, three youth and a supervisor were hired by the Tseshaht First Nation to work for the summer building the trail and park," said Zirnhelt. "The work crew was trained in sustainable trail design and building techniques and set-off to complete a short free-ride trail loop, dirt jumps and a pump track. The park opened in late August with over thirty community members including adults, youth, and kids out to test out the new skills area. Already I've heard the community talking about phase two and adding some wooden features to the park."