The first Open Gate event to be held in Canada in 2016 took place at Shipwheel Feeders, in Taber, Alberta on July 7th, 2016. 35 participants were on hand to hear ranch owner Blake Holtman and ranch manager Andrea Stroeve-Sawa discuss the story of Shipwheel Feeders, which includes 35 years of Holistic Management Decision-Making.
Next, Holistic Management Certified Educator and former Board Chair Kelly Sidoryk presented a power point that focused on the decision making process and testing questions. Participants were then brought out to a grazing cell and broken up into small groups, with each group going through the testing questions.
After lunch, participants shared some insights from the exercises that were completed in the field. Kristen Miller, from the Multi Species at Risk group gave a presentation on the work that they do, along with an assessment of Shipwheel. Participants then headed back outside to a riparian area to listen to a presentation on the health of riparian areas from Kristi Stebanuk from The Alberta Riparian Habitat Management Society, more commonly known as the Cows and Fish program, with a question and answer session immediately following. Ranch manager Andrea then led participants on a walking tour, with Andrea going over basic grazing practices as well as pointing out an area where they used animal impact to deal with invasive sage plants.
Back inside, Kelly Sidoryk shared another short power point presentation that featured the basic principles of Holistic Management, including pictures and examples from their operation. The day concluded with an introduction to program collaborators; the Food, Water and Wellness Foundation, and the Young Agrarians.
HMI would like to thank Shipwheel Feeders, The Alberta Riparian Habitat Management Society, the Food, Water and Wellness Foundation, and the Young Agrarians for their support and collaboration in making this event possible.
Here are some of the results:
Program Impact & Improved Knowledge
|% of Participants|
|Would recommend event to others||100%|
|Overall program satisfaction||95%|
|Intend to test decisions for operation||94%|
|Intend to modify or complete an enterprise analysis||80%|
Here is what some of the participants had to say about the event:
“Really well done. Motivating.”
“Worth my time.”
“It was very informative and field demonstrations were very effective.”
“Good event, learned a lot! Great people.”
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