Knowledge of land management has not been adequately represented in the secondary or post secondary institutions. The development of the Ontario Aboriginal Lands Association, and subsequently, the National Aboriginal Lands Managers Association has successfully filled this gap.
Since inception OALA has developed training and work plans that are driven by its membership, the Land Managers working on the ground at their First Nations. When OALA members come together they are given a platform to discuss various components of their jobs, and the land management work that is unique to their First Nation. Often, member discussions are prompted by the following questions:
- What lands projects are you currently working on?
- What are some challenges you are facing?
- How did you, or how do you plan to overcome those challenges?
- What are some successes you have had?
- What are some topics that you would like to receive training on?
Based on the answers and updates from members, OALA then compiles information and determines the most suitable training options for the group. It is of utmost importance that OALA is able to meet the current needs of its members, by providing opportunities for training that is current, and relevant to lands management.
NALMA’s role as the certifying body of Land Managers in Canada, and its delivery methods which showcases technical hands-on skills for the management of lands and learning from shared experiences, is an ideal approach to adult learning. Learn more about NALMA Training here
During the covid-19 pandemic, as we all adjust to the new normal of virtual meetings and social distancing, we are working hard to find ways to continue to meet these needs.
For more information about specific training opportunities, please visit OALA’s Event calendar here:
Webinars will be delivered online and made available to OALA members. Topics will be chosen based on specific requests for training from members or based on new information received from a partner organization. These sessions will typically run between 1-2 hours, and will be accompanied by downloadable handouts or resources.
Visit the OALA events calendar for specific dates and topics.
OALA will be hosting monthly lunch-n-learns, that will only be open to OALA members. This will allow an open discussion between members, who may wish to touch base on various projects, concerns, or just catch up with colleagues. These sessions will typically be 1 hour long.
In 1995 when a small group of land managers came together to form OALA, it was because they recognized the need for more opportunities for training and networking in the field of land management. This profession comes with an exceptional amount of responsibility to maintain the integrity of the First Nation lands they are managing while also navigating the legal obligations required to effectively manage land, whether under the Indian Act, or as signatories to the Framework Agreement on First Nation Land Management. Working together to build networks to support each other is the foundation of this Association.
Mentorship is the pairing of an experienced or skilled person (mentor) with a person who would like to improve his or her skills (mentee). Traditionally, senior employees mentored junior colleagues; however, in the field of Land Management it is important to also look beyond your own First Nation department and seek the guidance and support from other colleagues in the field.
OALA prides itself on the strong relationship that has developed among land managers over the years and hopes to continue to support those relationships into the future. OALA will continue to provide avenues for open discussion and dialogue among membership, while also looking at future opportunities for more formalized mentorship programs.
Visit the OALA member portal to access our discussion board, where land managers can pose land management questions and share experiences.