Thursday 30 June 2016

SAM Annual General Meeting in the Codroy Valley

SAM held its Annual General Meeting this year in the Codroy Valley on June 17-18. We would like to thank our hosts, the residents of the Codroy Valley for being so welcoming, and Kathleen Blanchard and her staff at Intervale Associates for arranging the logistics of the weekend.

On Friday evening, participants were treated to a delicious buffet supper and had the opportunity to meet several local residents. SAM President Linda Bailet was the MC for the night, and introduced Claudelle Devoe, Chair of the Codroy Valley Area Development Association and Local MHA Scott Reid, who both gave welcoming remarks. Local resident Derek White gave a very informative presentation on the natural, social and geological history of the region, and the event was topped off by some lively traditional music from local musicians.

View of the Grand Codroy Estuary.
At the business meeting on Saturday, delegates from 18 member municipalities reported on their town's latest stewardship and conservation initiatives. It has been another busy year for our members, with many clean-ups, trail developments, community gardens, interpretive centers and more on the go. A major topic of discussion during the meeting was the development of a provincial wetland policy, and the historic and future role of SAM in fulfilling this goal. SAM supports the development of a wetland policy, because it is an important step in safeguarding significant wetland habitat, and could provide a framework for future restoration opportunities.

SAM Members search for the Great Blue Heron.
After the meeting SAM members were treated to a tour of the Grand Codroy Estuary, which is Newfoundland and Labrador's only Ramsar Wetland of International Significance. Participants were able to view the provincially rare Great Blue Heron and the endangered Piping Plover - and even four plover chicks! The field trip was followed by dinner and more live music at the Silver Sands Restaurant and Lounge. Thank you again to our hosts for all of their hard work, and thank you to the delegates who attended!
SAM Members view the endangered Piping Plover on the beach.

Save the date for the next SAM meeting: it will be held in Happy Valley - Goose Bay on September 23-24, 2016. See you there!