Community Risk Reduction

by Jody Dickson

In October, I was able to participate in a “Train the Trainer” workshop hosted by the Pike Peak Wildfire Prevention Partners.  While the theme was how to teach about wildfire mitigation, we mostly talked about effective ways to teach about community risk reduction.  I was hoping to get some insight about what motivates people to prioritize and do mitigation work on their property.  Of course, there are no easy answers.  Just like with financial investing, we each have a different level of risk we are willing to tolerate in our lives.  Also, we all have an optimism bias where we overestimate that good things will happen and underestimate the likelihood of the bad things that could happen.  Consequently, we either don’t recognize or act on the risks.  We believe that “It will ever happen to me.”  If an individual’s only experience with fire is a camp fire or a fireplace which are not very scary, what reminds us that ALL big, devastating fires start small?  As we hear about local fires or the major ones in California, what can we learn about how we are prepared as a community?  Our major goal at Saws and Slaws is to reduce the risk AND impact of a wildfire.  Our events are meant to both reduce risk AND build community.  Both will be critical in the event of a fire.  As they say, it isn’t “if” it is “when” since we live in a fire-adapted ecosystem. 

As a result of this training, I’d like to see if there would be interest in getting together to discuss the specific risks for our community as well as our risk reduction values and priorities.  Across organizations, neighborhoods, and neighbors we have separate areas of focus we prioritize and try to address, but as a whole community we likely have some shared priorities and opportunities that we could collaborate on together that would collectively have significant impact on improving our resiliency or reduce or risk.  What is the risk reduction opportunity or what do we value as a community that we would be willing to prioritize and put some effort into?  If you’d be interested in participating in such a discussion, please contact Jody Dickson, 303-588-6639 or jody@dickson.org.   

Safety Tip of the Month: Check your footing

Many people like to do their mitigation in the winter because it isn’t so hot under all the personal protective equipment.  Also, the pine beetles are not as likely to be moving about and attracted to the scent of fresh-cut wood and slash.  That said, with any snow cover or otherwise wet surfaces, be extra careful of your footing, including your escape route when felling a tree.  Make sure your feet feel secure before you start cutting, and check your exit path that you will take when the tree starts to fall to make sure it is also clear of slippery surfaces and trip hazards.  It is always a good idea to take it slow and steady to ensure you have secure footing. 

Saws & Slaws Vests

Looking for the perfect holiday gift for yourself or your favorite orange-loving friend?  We still have a few Saws & Slaws’ orange-fleece vests available for sale in VERY limited quantities.  At press time, we have one medium, one large and three extra-larges left.  They are $35 each.  Claim yours today by contacting Jody Dickson, jody@dickson.org, 303-588-6639. 

Year End Gratitude

We here at Saws and Slaws are SO grateful to all the volunteers and supporters that make our efforts a success. We appreciate you!!  We are wishing you and yours a Happy Holiday Season and look forward to a Fantastic New Year full of fun forest events! Want to join us? All ages and skill levels are welcome 🙂 Email Linda at weecreekers@gmail.com or call (303) 642-0273.

December Events

Firewood Orders

Split Cords $225 and bucked cords $175. Simply email us at sawsandslaws@gmail.com to place your order. Feel the warmth of supporting your community’s fire mitigation efforts.

2019 Season Applications Now Open

Saws and Slaws is now taking applications for neighborhood events for 2019. Now is the time to talk to your neighbors about getting on the schedule for next Spring and Summer. Get out, connect with those in your proximity, and vow to get your properties safer and healthier. Got questions? Call Us! (303) 642-0273.

Saws and Slaws is a 501(c)3 organization committed to Building Stronger Communities Through A Healthier Forest. Find out more at http://sawsandslaws.org