Essential forest care was all the buzz at Camp Korey last week as workers tackled pre-commercial thinning of forest stands at the Carnation Farm. There are over 250 acres of managed forest on the farm which is leased by the non-profit camp as part of its year-round programs serving children with serious illnesses.
"We are so privileged to have this incredible 800-acre property as our home base for serving Northwest children and families," says Chief Operating Officer Lane Youngblood, "and we take our stewardship of this land very seriously." The camp has a 30-year lease and is responsible for the care of all the historic buildings and land on the former dairy farm near Carnation.
Camp Korey’s adopted Forest Management Plan identifies pre-commercial thinning as the first of several recommended steps in care of tree stands that were planted in the 1980s. The thinning, being done by chainsaw, will allow light and moisture to support habitat for animals, improve water conservation, and reduce potential damage from wildfire and pests. Remaining trees will grow in value from this forest practice and one day be harvested.
The work is funded by the Natural Resource Conservation Service EQIP program, a program that assists small forest owners to sustain the health of their forests. "We’re in the business of helping kids and their families face tough medical conditions like Mitochondrial disease" says Youngblood, "and all our services are free to families, so we’re grateful for the support of King County and the NRCS in providing expertise and funding to keep our forest healthy."
Camp Korey is part of the Serious Fun Children’s Network founded by Paul Newman. Operations at Camp Korey were launched in 2008 by local Costco executive Tim Rose in honor of his son Korey who lost a battle with cancer at the age of 16. The camp offers respite, hope and healing through its partnerships with NW hospitals such as Seattle Children’s and Mary Bridge in Tacoma.
"Caring for the incredible land and water resources here at Camp Korey is all part of sustaining this place for the healing of our children and the benefit of the community at large," says Youngblood.