South Fork Forest Camp started their Adopt-A-Highway Journey with a small 2.25 mile section of HWY 6. The adults in custody (AIC) would walk both sides of the highway, cleaning up litter. Not only did they take on cleaning up the litter as a challenging pursuit, but they also found the work very rewarding after seeing the impact of their efforts.
The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) noticed the litter cleanup efforts and the impacts it had on the section of the highway and agreed to allow the AIC crews to take on cleaning up the majority of HWY 6 – which is approximately 52 miles long. The AICs would walk roughly 10 miles per day! One day of picking trash, resulted in filling up a 10-yard dumpster with debris.
The Wildland Suppression Crew from the Oregon Department of Correction’s (DOC) South Fork Forest Camp (SFFC) deployed to Ball Bearing Fire, roughly 12 miles east of Carlton, Oregon. This was only day one of a three-day process. Adults in custody (AICs) and the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) staff took hand tools and water hoses to the side of this mountain. The Wildland Fire Fighters pushed their way through acres of land, cutting and digging deep under stumps, roots, and rocks.
Since 1951, ODF has utilized Oregon Department of Corrections adults in custody to help reforest and protect state forest lands. ODF trains and supervises AIC crews to perform a variety of key forest management and protection projects. It is the largest and oldest work camp in the Pacific Northwest. Work crews perform forest management in eleven counties in northwest Oregon, assist with disaster relief efforts, and engage in fire suppression statewide. In a given year, South Fork Camp can produce up to 28,000-man days of skilled adults in custody labor saving the state millions in labor costs.
This interagency partnership allows adults in custody to gain valuable work skills while providing economic, social, and environmental benefits for Oregonians.
South Fork Crews spent 16 days providing Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife (ODFW) with the manpower to complete a very special task. ODFW needed to mark (fin clip) a very particular fin for the fish they are raising and did not have the manpower to get the task accomplished in time. The adults in custody (AICs) at South Fork stepped up and got just over 300,000 Fall Chinook clipped to make this a successful year for the Klaskanine Salmon Fish Hatchery project. The team at ODFW was so impressed with the hard work and effort put into this project, they provided the crew with BBQ ribs and Root beer. This is a well-deserved lunch for the adults in custody. They even ended their day tossing a football around.
South Fork has been invited back next year to help with the fin clipping project and will no doubt make the Department of Corrections proud once again!
The Joys of Living Assistance Dogs program is going strong at South Fork Forest Camp
Last year, South Fork Forest Camp (SFFC) partnered with the Joys of Living Assistance Dogs (JLAD), a non-profit organization dedicated to training and raising service dogs to support and assist persons living with disabilities. The adults in custody (AICs) train them, and then the dogs are placed with individuals that need them. Below are testimonials from AICs talking about how the program has impacted their lives.
South Fork Forest Camp (SFFC) recently partnered with the Joys of Living Assistance Dogs (JLAD), a non-profit organization dedicated to training and raising service dogs. Their mission is to provide skilled, devoted service dogs to support and assist persons living with disabilities – creating cohesive teams focused on building a life of greater freedom and independence. The adults in custody (AICs) train them, and then the dogs are placed with individuals that need them.
Last week, SFFC received their first set of eight puppies who will be rotated through SFFC four at a time. These dedicated AICs at SFFC put their hearts and souls into these dogs, and clearly the dogs do wonders for these individuals too. Below are testimonials from AICs talking about how the program has, and will, impact their lives.
TILLAMOOK STATE FOREST, Ore.—More than 46,000 steelhead trout gush out of the rearing pond and into Tuffy Creek at South Fork Forest Camp on an unusual snowy day in April. After being confined to the pond for seven months, the three-to-five-inch fish now face a challenging journey — much like the people who raised them.
“This camp is the only one of its kind in Oregon,” said Dave Luttrell, South Fork camp manager. “We are a minimum-security facility run jointly by the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) and the Department of Corrections (DOC)—we house up to 200 adults in custody.”
Telmate completed their installation of the tablet system at South Fork Forest Camp (SFFC) today, making the Oregon Department of Corrections (DOC) the first state correctional agency to have tablet services online and available at all facilities. The DOC-Telmate team began this work in August 2017, and SFFC was the last of DOC’s 14 facilities to receive tablets due to unique challenges in the installation process.
Adults in custody (AICs) housed at SFFC quickly logged on and began using the system. With a variety of messaging options offered through the tablets, AICs at South Fork now have another way of connecting to friends and family. Keeping AICs in touch with their community and support networks has been shown to reduce recidivism.