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Justin and Frank

Justin and Francis are the JFR Crew Leaders based in Lac La Biche this summer.

Tell us a bit about yourself

Francis:

I live between the South Pacific Ocean and the Tasman sea, where a cool Southerly wind brings me air from Antarctica. I don’t know anything hotter than 30 degrees, nor anything colder than minus 2… yet. I have Christmas in the middle of Summer, it’s way better that way. I really like the ocean, I really like surfing, I really like music. I don’t really like surfing and listening to music at the same time, unless I’m making cool drumming beats on my surfboard while waiting for waves. I am rather fond of physical activities and sport, with the likes of skating, mountain biking, motocross, kayaking, paddle boarding, skimboarding, surfing, rugby, waterpolo and all kinds of others. I enjoy green tea during the day and chamomile by night.    

Justin:

I grew up in Niagara Ontario, home of the best peaches in Canada. I’ve always loved being on/in the water and after I did my first back country camping /canoeing trip in Algonquin with my brother at 17 I was hooked. I’ve always been interested with Canada’s geography and its people, I’ve lived, worked and studied in Gros Morne National Park (Norris Point, Nfld), Haida Gwaii, The Toronto Islands, and Waterloo Ont. Fearing I would never leave Canada I was inspired by someone close to pack up and head abroad, where I ended up living in China for almost a year, with some notable visit being to the Philippines, Malaysia, Indonesia and northern Vietnam. Now I’m back in Canada, reconnecting with friends and family and trying to figure out how I can get up to Yellowknife this summer.

Why did you apply to the JFR program?

Francis:

I applied for JFR because I am in love with the outdoors. I saw this program as an opportunity to help myself and others grow with healthy happy minds, while being outside in my element. I am fascinated by nature and wildlife, and what better way to see it. Oh and I wanted to have two summers in a row.   

Justin:

Wildfire has always been on my list of must do’s, but it was only recently that I found there’s really no other program JFR, as far as I’ve found. You get to be part of Wildfire Management, help expose young people to so many different career paths while getting in touch with Alberta’s wild areas. I also wanted a challenge, and something to build on my past outdoor education experience. I want this to lead me towards more wilderness first aid skills, plant and ecosystem identification and knowledge of Alberta’s fire management. 

What are you most excited about for the upcoming summer?

Francis:

I am most excited to sit round the fire pit that we have built, and chomp down a box of oreos on the regular. I am also very excited to learn all about Canada’s natural environment and its inhabitants. 

Justin:

Variety is the spice of life, and the projects we have this summer should be keeping everyone fresh and engaged. I’m also excited to put on Canadian trivia nights to our crew, and Francis.

What makes you happy?

Francis:

People make me happy and a good old yarn really puts a smile on my dial. I am also very satisfied by production- getting things done, especially if you can see what you’ve done… like looking back at the freshly mowed lawns that you did at your nana’s house, perfectly lined and all. Eating an orange in the shower also makes me happy.

Justin:

Australians, Good Conversation, Good Coffee. Beyond that it’s pretty hard to take a smile off my face. If I had to choose though it’d be a full day outside, with a mid-day swim in a lake/ocean and an evening campfire.  

Describe what JFR means to you in 5 words or less. 

Francis: 

Growth, Coffee, Family, Mosquitos, Wilderness   

Justin:

Challenge, Plaid, Skills, Fire, Family

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