If you need to experience working with fishermen with diverse cultural backgrounds, Prince Rupert, BC is the best place to work! Here, we have fishermen originally from different parts of the world that have made Prince Rupert their home base.
My current research interests are in an integrated approach to ocean and coastal management, with focus on how to ensure that all marine activities are managed to avoid conflicts and environmental degradation, and promote community development and local management. I came to Ecotrust Canada to experience working with a non-governmental organization that is involved in community-based fisheries management programs.
During my stay in Prince Rupert, I had the opportunity to visit a First Nation in northwest BC to see examples of self-government which included management of fisheries, and chat with local fishermen, who visit the office for various reasons such as renewing their fishing licences, asking for help with their missing traps or just saying hello!
I now understand the hushed, indispensable and peculiar role organizations like Ecotrust Canada play towards smoothing relations between DFO and local fishermen; the time investment required to build trusted relationships with the various stakeholders; the complexity of Pacific fisheries and different regulatory regimes; and the need to build capacity to respond to identified needs.
A program that I find particularly impressive is the Fisheries Diversification Model. Recommendations from the application of this model serve to shape and empower local fishermen, particularly First Nations, to achieve and sustain set objectives and development, using effective strategies that promote individual potential, community solidarity, and ecosystem support.
In light of the treaties signed by the Government of Canada, the Province of British Columbia and First Nations, and recognition accorded to the treaties being displayed in the winning of the landmark Supreme Court of Canada case of R. v. Gladstone, I am anxious to know how fisheries will evolve in years to come.
Yetunde Adjube completed a 13-week internship in our Skeena office this summer. She holds a Masters and a PhD in fisheries management from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria, with professional experience in fisheries governance. She recently moved to Canada and in order to know more about Canadian coastal zone management, she is currently undergoing an Advanced Diploma in Integrated Coastal and Ocean Management at the Marine Institute, Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador.