Vanderhoof — The Nechako Valley Community Services Society (NVCSS) has made a point to recognize two local mills for their continued support of the NVCSS Work Crew.
“The NVCSS Work Crew would not be as successful in supporting the community without the continued support of Plateau and L&M,” Kerry Kennedy, 30, program manager, said. “On behalf of NVCSS I would like to thank both mills and New Gold for their donations and support. People are getting faster service when it’s here instead of out in the woods.”
The Works Crew delivers wood rain or shine to clients in Vanderhoof, Fraser Lake, Prince George, Fort St. James and all throughout the Nechako Lakes. They are also known for their lawn-mowing and leaf-racking services particularly for seniors but, wood cutting and delivery has always been the biggest chunk of what we do, Clarence Prince, 62, works crew coordinator said.
“Without the mills providing us a [space] it would be much tougher to cut and pile wood out in the bush,” he said.
For more than ten years Vanderhoof’s Plateau and L&M saw mills have supplied a lot for the Works Crew to cut and load wood. They have also recently supplied truck loads of wood free of charge, just as Gulbranson Logging has done over the years, Prince said.
“With the mill’s continued support we have lower cost for seniors because we’re not spending so much money on gas and finding the wood,” Prince said. “It also gives the guys more work hours because instead of being out in the bush were right in town so it helps us provide quicker service too.”
Prince’s position is funded through Community Living British Columbia (CLBC) but the wages of the other employees who make up the Work Crew come directly from money made through selling the wood and other services.
Donovan Massetoe, 22, has been employed on the Work Crew for three years.
“Everyone’s friendly and gets along and I like our job. We measure the wood, cut it to a sixteenth length, put it in the truck and deliver. We also take turns splitting and piling.”
A wood splitter was donated to the NVCSS Work Crew by New Gold last year, which is great because it makes the work much more safe, Kennedy said.
As one of the longest-working work crew employees, Rick Barton, 63, feels having the mill bring them wood is a lot nicer than going out in the bush.
“Without the mills we would have to go out and get the wood which would take a lot more energy and time, which we don’t have. We’ve had the lot to work in for a while but before we had to go find our own wood. Now it’s a lot easier,” he said.