Caleb Mailman is the green summer student behind colourful flowers and perfectly maintained trails in the Municipality of the District of St. Mary’s, Nova Scotia. Thanks to funding from the CPRA’s Green Jobs Initiative, which is funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Summer Work Experience program, the municipality was able to hire the high school student to work as a Green Project Leader.
“If it is green, I have probably had a hand in keeping it that way,” says Caleb. “This is my first official summer job other than mowing lawns in my spare time. I really enjoy the work, the people I work with, and most of all I really love to spend time outdoors.”
Throughout the summer, Caleb improved and maintained public spaces around the district, with a focus on the community of Sherbrooke. These spaces included the local trail system, public parks, and green spaces. Caleb also led guided public hikes throughout the municipality.
“My work allowed people in my community to explore nature in safe settings,” he says. “I made sure the places and spaces that gave people access to the natural environment were well kept, and beautiful.”
“My work allowed people in my community to explore nature in safe settings” - Caleb Mailman, student
Kerri Penney, Director of Community Development and Recreation for the Municipality of the District of St. Mary’s, says Caleb’s summer job was very important to the municipality.
The community is made up of a lot of green and natural spaces, she says, and it is important to get residents and visitors out to experience all that the municipality has to offer.
“I like to call the natural environment our largest ‘facility’!” she says. “If the settings are welcoming and safe for residents to enjoy, they will be attracted to spend time in them. Spending time in the outdoors will allow people to fall in love with nature and care more about nature. Caleb is helping us make that happen.”
She adds that Caleb’s hard work this summer will have a lasting effect on the community – especially his work to remove an aging and dangerous boardwalk in the town’s Stonewall Park, where he also helped improve the look of the popular hiking spot.
Kerri says that the CPRA’S Green Jobs Initiative helped a small, rural municipality get a boost and focus on areas that deserve to be well cared for.
“This program has allowed us to really make a lot of changes in our green and natural settings,” she says.
She also noticed that the funding made a personal impact on a summer student who worked his first real job.
“It was a joy to work with Caleb and watch him grow in the position, both in ability and confidence,” she says.
“I got to be outdoors for the most of my time, and in the summer, that is where I love to be” - Caleb Mailman, student
Caleb says he would love the opportunity to have a green job again, and that the experience was unforgettable.
“I had so much fun working in this position,” he says. “I got to be outdoors for the most of my time, and in the summer, that is where I love to be.”
The CPRA’s Green Jobs Initiative supports Goal 3 ‘Connecting People & Nature’ and Goal 5 ‘Recreation Capacity’ within the Framework for Recreation in Canada. The Framework serves as a foundation for the work of the parks and recreation sector.
To read all success stories go to: https://www.cpra.ca/stories