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Thursday, 26 April 2018

Forest Dept, UMS and KTS Plantation team up to conduct forestry camp

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By Borneo Post

Discussion in the field on technical aspect of Reduce Impact Logging.
KOTA KINABALU: For the second consecutive year, KTS Plantation Sdn Bhd has teamed up with Sabah Forest Department to enhance the practical learning experience of forestry students from Universiti Malaysia Sabah through the 17th Forestry Camp which was held in Segaliud Lokan Forest Reserve.
The two-week event which was held from  Aug 28 to Sept 8  was attended by 149 students from the various programme under the Forestry Complex, Faculty of Science and Natural Resources.
Hailed as one of the most essential syllabus in the development of future forester, the Forest Camp is a compulsory subject for the second year students majoring in the forestry programme comprising  International Tropical Forestry, Forest Plantation and Agroforestry, Nature Parks and Recreation and the Wood Technology and Industry.
This subject emphasises the theory and practical practices in forestry studies and management.
Among the modules covered were Forest Survival, Motivation, Survey on forest resources and non-timber forest, Forest Soils, Forest Community, Wildlife Management, Forest Inventory, Dendrology, Forest Management and Silviculture.
The students also learned communication and leadership skills through presentations and group assignments during the camp.
The activities developed involved ‘direct’ physical and mental endurance in the forest that are necessary for those training to be a forester.
The expectations are, upon completion of the modules, students can apply their basic forestry knowledge and skills into practices, analysing theories, applying forester’s values and enhance communication and leadership skills among students.   KTS Plantation conducted a similar camp last year.
Forestry students and officials from KTS Plantation and UMS during the Camp Fire night.
The camp was one of the many initiatives taken under the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed in November 2016 and the first to be held in the East Coast of Sabah by UMS in collaboration with a private company managing Forest Management Unit (FMU)  managed under the principles of Sustainable Forest Management.
It is also different from  previous Forestry Camps with the development of new tailor-made Mentoring Programme module which was introduced as a session of sharing of live experience and knowledge on the Sustainable Forest Management implementation at the FMU level, from the experienced mentors among the KTSP and the Sabah Forest Department personnel, and UMS lecturers.
Commenting on the achievement of the event, Associate Prof. Dr. Liew Kang Chiang said “This is one of the events that we were really looking forward to every year. To have the event conducted in the real environment and also witness the actual operation carried out is a rare experience for young foresters.
“All the essential components of forest operation such as Harvesting, Planning, Forest Restoration, Research and Conservation were effectively carried out in KTS Plantation. With all these components present for learning, it is no doubt that KTS Plantation provides an ideal environment for this Forestry Camp.”
The mentoring programme, which involved the participation of Mentors from official and technical staff of the Sabah Forest Department and KTS Plantation is one of the best example of synergetic partnership for learning among the different organisations.
Siti Norhaidah Yan, who hails from Putatan said: “The first four semesters of learning have introduced me to the basic knowledge of the Rainforest. However, this Forestry Camp has engraved the awareness of the importance of responsible forest management to ensure sustainability of the forest for future generations.”
Another young forester, Mohd Arif Saufiuddin Mohd Usop who is from Papar, Sabah echoed the same sentiment.
“We have heard and learnt the theory of Sustainable Forest Management in class room.
“However, after we see the huge commitment by KTS to reverse the negative impact of irresponsible logging activities in the 60’s, our paradigm has shifted. This has aroused in me more interest and love for the forest,”, he said.
This Mentoring Programme  was initiated by forestry lecturers of UMS and assisted by Fadzil Yahya and Collin Goh from the Sabah Forest Department and KTS Plantation Sdn Bhd.
As the first private company in Malaysia in the forest industry certified with both MC&I (Natural Forest) for Forest Management certification and MS ISO 14001 for Environmental Management System certification, KTS Plantation Sdn Bhd is optimistic of providing an ideal site for the Forestry Camp as a case study for the university students to understand the real challenge of the forestry industry in Sabah.
The closing ceremony was carried out on Thursday.
The highlight of the event was the lighting up of a Camp Fire, dubbed as ‘Malam UnggunApi’ (Camp Fire Night) a traditional ritual for Forestry Camp as a symbolic gesture of respect for nature and the wilderness.
Present during the ceremony were Goh, Liew and Janiu Gangon who represented KTS Plantation, Universiti Malaysia Sabah and Sabah Forest Department respectively.
As the host of the event Goh who is also the Sabah Area Operation Manager (Forests) said “KTS is very grateful that UMS has chosen the SLFR as the site for their 17th Forestry Camp. We are humbled to be part of your journey and we hope that all of you will develop into a robust and competent foresters.”
He also reiterated KTSP’s commitment to support this programme in the future.
In his speech during the closing ceremony, Liew hailed the initiative between the three parties as a major step forward for UMS in enhancing learning through a ‘live’ forest laboratory where students can learn the real life in the forests and the concept of Sustainable Forest Management.
He also thanked the Forest Department and KTS Sdn Bhd  for facilitating and accommodating the Forest Camp in Segaliud Lokan Forest Reserve and hoped that this collaboration will continue in the future, especially the cooperation of sharing and delivery of knowledge to students of UMS, Sabah Forest Department and KTS Plantation Sdn Bhd.
Student learning the implementation of Reduce Impact Logging during the mentoring programme.
For further information log on website :
http://www.theborneopost.com/2017/09/09/forest-dept-ums-kts-plantation-team-up-to-conduct-forestry-camp/

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