Forest Fire Recovery
Since 2017, WATERAX has planted over 15,000 trees across North America. At WATERAX, we are dedicated to doing our part to rejuvenate environments devastated by wildfires—and what better way than planting trees? Each new tree contributes to cleaner air and water, improved biodiversity, and sequestering carbon, while mitigating climate change and creating a healthier world for everyone. Replenishing the forest and supporting its growth are essential for the wellbeing of our planet and for the countless people whose jobs rely on it. Every tree planted also helps contribute to future opportunities for all.Learn more about our partners
No Blue, No Green
Wildfires aren’t just a land thing. Replenishing the forest and supporting its growth are essential for the wellbeing of our planet and for the countless people whose jobs rely on it. Every tree planted also helps contribute to future opportunities for all. Yet, only 29% of our planet’s surface is made up of greens, greys, browns and earth tones. Our shimmering oceans make up the remaining 71%, representing 139 million square miles of the planet’s surface and billions of tons of biomass.
As the legendary oceanographer Dr Sylvia Earle said, the ocean is Earth’s blue heart—it sustains us and all we love. As we commit to respecting planet Earth, let's remember that without blue, there is no green.
Here are a few initiatives and causes that are important to us because they have a positive impact on forests, the ocean, the environment and the wellbeing of our communities.
Most of the following websites have links to online activism—sometimes it’s as simple as adding your name to a petition or clicking a link to send an email to a legislator. If you’re more ambitious, why not look into volunteer opportunities? You can make a difference with your time and energy instead of, or as well as, your wallet.
Be part of the solution.
Learn more about our partners
WATERAX in the Community
To feel the intimacy of brothers is a marvelous thing in life. To feel the love of people whom we love is a fire that feeds our life. But to feel affection that comes from those whom we do not know is something still greater and more beautiful because it widens out the boundaries of our being and unites all living things.’’— Pablo Neruda
Here are a few initiatives and causes that are close to our hearts because they have a positive impact on forests, the ocean, the environment and the wellbeing of the community.
In 2016, to honour the memory of our colleague Serge Giammaria who took his own life in 2010, we made a $1,000 contribution to the Firefighter Behavioral Alliance.
BC Wildfire Relief Fund
In 2015, WATERAX contributed $1,000 to the BC Wildfire Fund to help those affected by fires in British Columbia. The BC Wildfire Relief Fund allows the Red Cross to move quickly, helping people in dire need of help.
In 2017, WATERAX donated $1,000 to help support those affected by countrywide flooding. Thanks to contributions, the Red Cross was able to help in over 25 municipalities across Canada.
In 2017, WATERAX donated $1,000 to the BC Wildfire Relief Fund to help support thousands of families impacted by dangerous and fast-spreading wildfires. In this critical moment, the Red Cross is supporting the province of British Columbia and local authorities in providing assistance to those affected by the wildfires.
Recovering from a wildfire takes time and a diverse network of organizations and services to make sure people have the help they need.Learn more
The Granite Mountain Fund supports firefighting as well as the towns and families impacted by fires. WATERAX is proud to support the men and women who protect our forests and most cherished natural resources from the ravages of wildfires. Donations for The Granite Mountain Fund benefit the Wildland Firefighter Foundation, the Eric Marsh Foundation, the Kevin Woyjeck Explorers Foundation, the Prescott Firefighter’s Charities, California Fire Foundation, and Carry The Load.Learn more
Jerry Duchaine, a volunteer firefighter and full-time advanced EMT approached WATERAX with a unique project he and his wife had been developing. As he prepared to deploy to Afghanistan with his National Guard unit 8 years ago Jerry found out that his family of two was about to become a family of four! After he returned home 18 months later, one of Jerry’s boys, Stephen, was diagnosed as being on the autism spectrum (luckily on the higher-functioning end). It has been an adjustment for the entire family but fortunately Stephen and his brother Raymond both love the fire service. When he experiences an outburst, it’s his love of the fire service that helps Stephen focus and channel his energies.
The WATERAX team is proud to support Jerry and his family in this amazing project to “Extinguish the Misconceptions of Autism”.
Visit Extinguish the Misconceptions of Autism for the latest updates
We sponsor the Maritime College of Forest Technology’s WATERAX Award, which, along with a $500 cheque, is presented to the graduating student with the highest marks in fire management courses. WATERAX (WAJAX at the time) has been supporting the award since 1987.
In 2016, WATERAX awarded $500 to support the wildland fire related research—focusing on gender and leadership—of a Masters student from the School of Leadership Studies at Royal Roads University who publishes and presents at wildland fire conferences and symposia worldwide.
Wildland Firefighter Foundation’s main focus is to help families of firefighters killed in the line of duty and to assist injured firefighters and their families. We join them to honour and acknowledge past, present and future members of the wildland firefighting community. WFF partners with private and interagency organizations to bring recognition to wildland firefighters.Spreading Compassion Like Wildfire
Our landlord at the Vancouver, WA office, Kittleson Properties LLC, out of courtesy during this COVID crisis, wanted to extend a hand to its tenants by reducing the monthly rent for May by 50%. He stated that even if we didn’t need the break, he suggested we made a donation of that reduction to a charity of our choice. Which is the decision we took to help out others since we are not as in need as others.On behalf of #WATERAX and Kittelson Properties, we donated $5,977 USD to the Wildland Firefighter Foundation
Wildland Firefighter Foundation’s main focus is to help families of firefighters killed in the line of duty and to assist injured firefighters and their families. We honor and acknowledge past, present, and future members of the wildland firefighting community, and partner with private and interagency organizations to bring recognition to wildland firefighters.Learn more
We discovered The Smokey Generation on the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter. It was founded in 2014 by Bethany Hannah—former US Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management Hotshot firefighter and Emergency Medical Technician.
WATERAX is proud to have sponsored The Smokey Generation’s project “American Wildfire Experience 2019 Wildland Fire Digital Storytelling” in its mission to collect, preserve, and share the stories of wildland firefighters by donating $500. Congratulations to all the winners!
- Amanda Monthei (US - Videography)
- Ben Gregory (US - Photography)
- Bre Orcasitas (US - Writing)
- Garrett Shephard (US - Photography)
- Greg Jones (CA - Photography)
- Jack Ramsay (US - Videography)
- Jake Niece (US - Photography)
- Kane Wyatt (CA - Photography)
- Krystal Hazen-McCreary (US - Writing)
- Kyle Miller (US - Photography)
- Lucy Grainger (CA - Photography)
- William Robert Victor Eason (CA - Photography)
Chosen from among many talented applicants, the twelve selectees represent a cross-section of US and Canadian wildland firefighters intent on telling the story of wildland fire in creative, authentic, insightful and compelling ways.Learn more
WATERAX participated in National Denim Day 2019 to show our support and raise funds to help eradicate breast cancer.
All donations helped:
- Purchase much-needed hospital equipment
- Fund basic and clinical research
- Support community programs that help breast cancer patients and their families
The WATERAX team took part in one of Quebec's most important road races and fundraising runs. The Banque Scotia 21k of Montreal features the Scotiabank Charity Challenge supporting 71 local charitable organizations this year. Fundraisers aimed to surpass last year's record of $1.25 million raised.
WATERAX employees Caroline and Tracy, along with friends, participated in the Mud Girl Run in Montreal, a 5 km event with 17+ accessible and fun obstacles, which raised money for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. There was a lot of mud, foam, slides and fun between girls!
Each EMBA cohort at the the John Molson School of Business is assigned a champion, a well-respected business leader who will remain in contact with the group throughout the two-year program. WATERAX President, Raffaele Gerbasi, was chosen to be the John Molson School of Business 2018-20 EMBA Class Champion.Learn more
President and CEO of WATERAX Inc., a division of Wildfire Group Holding Inc, M. Gerbasi has over 35 years of leadership experience in business start-up and entrepreneurship. He started in the cable broadband industry, then he founded an advanced test equipment manufacturing company in a difficult financial environment. With his expertise in business start-up, growth strategies, turnaround, as well as mergers and acquisitions, Mr. Gerbasi has enabled WATERAX to become the leader in water pumps and will now use his knowledge and expertise to support Développement Économique Saint-Laurent.
Prizes & Awards
The ADRIQ Innovation Awards 2023 shone on November 23 at the Palais des congrès de Montréal during the 33rd Innovation Awards Gala, bringing together over 575 participants. Under the dynamic leadership of Stéphane Bellavance, a distinguished personality in the television world, this prestigious event celebrated excellence in innovation.
We are proud to announce that WATERAX won the INNOVATION AWARD | SME 2023 at this exceptional evening. The ADRIQ Innovation Awards Gala honors companies contributing to making Quebec a model of innovation, highlighting their innovative capacity and technological creativity.
Our victory is based on the presentation of the new MARK-3 Watson Edition pump. This completely redesigned platform offers captivating modernized features, including the very first 140cc pump engine specially designed to combat forest fires.
We share this success with the entire WATERAX team, each member contributing to making this innovation a reality. Special thanks to Stéphane Bellavance, our host for the evening, and to Jonathan Bousquet, Caroline Houde, Soukeyna Aubert, Norith Tan, Raffaele Gerbasi, Frédéric Lefrançois, Pascal Monette (CEO of ADRIQ), and Sébastien Blanchard, Account Manager at Expert'ease.
This recognition strengthens our commitment to continuous innovation, and we look forward to pushing the boundaries of excellence in firefighting equipment.
On October 19, WATERAX attended the Alpha Gala in Montreal, QC. There, the company was presented two awards by the esteemed Chambre de commerce et d’Industrie de Saint Laurent – Mont Royal: Business of the Year and Innovators in Sustainable Technology.
The WATERAX team was selected from over 400 applicants and 50 finalists. Winning the Business of the Year and Innovators in Sustainable Technology awards not only reflect the company’s dedication but also pay tribute to the creativity, innovation, and hard work of our exceptional team members.
The winning initiative for their Innovators in Sustainable Technology award was our MARK-3 Watson Edition pump. Designed to revolutionize the firefighting industry, this innovation promises to make the environment safer and enhance the productivity of wildland firefighters. Considering Canada’s recent record-breaking wildfire season, the impact of such a groundbreaking product could not be more significant.
WATERAX marketing specialist Suzana Pires was awarded the prize for business excellence at the first World Summit on Women in Manufacturing (“Sommet mondial des femmes dans l'industrie manufacturière”). The prizes awarded during the summit celebrate Canadian women whose exceptional contributions have helped drive the growth and development of their industries.Watch now Learn more
This annual competition rewards extraordinary companies whose exceptional track records showcase Quebec products, knowledge and expertise around the world. These companies are distinguished by their dynamism, creativity and performance. In 2019, WATERAX is thrilled to have won in two categories, “Export Leader” and “Market Diversification”.Learn more
Quebec’s Ministry of Economy and Innovation selected WATERAX President, Raffaele Gerbasi, and Marketing Director, Gabriella Gerbasi, to showcase their HR best business practices, which have helped make the company a leading employer.Learn more
WATERAX was selected as one of the top Enterprise Fire Protection Solutions Provider in 2022 by Enterprise Security Magazine. Read Gabriella’s interview where she discussed the impacts of climate change on the ravages of wildfires as well as our vision for the future by setting new benchmarks of excellence with our cutting-edge water pumps in the wildland firefighting community around the world.Learn more