Project: The Game Changer


ABA members and partners are currently involved in the development of a new Erasmus + funded project 'The Game Changer'. The main aim is to provide support for people in a transition situation through skills development and accreditation.

Transforming trends grow both globally and at European level. Change affects everyone; it can be disruptive and difficult for individuals to transition through, particularly if a change crosses international borders, cultures and languages. ABA looks forward to supporting the partnership in the development of new educational platforms and skills testing in support of our mission to reduce or remove potential barriers to employment and mobility of skilled individuals. More information can be found here



ABA Centre: Fito-consult of Italy hosted a 5 day assessor training event at the European School of Varese during late November. New machinery assessors participated in pilot testing sessions related to the safe use of mobile elevating work platforms & subsequent verification of the new European standards. This is the second new machinery qualification under development by ABA technical specialists & Vet-Safety project team further developments are planned for 2017.



ABA and it's partners successfully hosted the first new forestry & arboriculture research conference at Mendel University, Brno, Czech Republic during early September. The conference abstracts and proceedings can be found here. The unique 2 day conference featured distinguished forestry & arboriculture researchers & speakers from:

  • Canada
  • Latvia
  • Germany
  • Great Britain
  • Italy
  • Romania
  • Spain

A brief overview can be seen here

Following the conference an update on progress of the current Vet-Safety project was held during the ABA meeting. This included industry expert group meetings, examination board meetings and technical meetings around upskilling & continuous improvement of trainers and assessors.

The next ABA assessor training events will be held in Czech Republic during October and in Italy during November. 



ABA members & Vet-Safety project members returned to Denmark recently for continuation training of potential ABA chainsaw assessors. Many participants were already holders of the International/European Chainsaw Certificate having qualified in previous training events. 5 days of intensive training also included tree climbing & aerial use of chainsaws (includes the new International/European Chainsaw Qualification), use of winching equipment and remote 1st aid training.

Participants undertook assessor training, supervised assessments and verification under observation by experienced ABA members representing industry & awarding bodies. The successful newly qualified ABA assessors received their certificates prior to enjoying the famous Nordic midsummer celebrations. Assessors that successfully met the standards represent the following countries where ABA chainsaw qualifications are available:

  • Czech Republic
  • Slovakia
  • Latvia
  • Ireland
  • Romania
  • Slovenia

A number of other chainsaw instructors have also progressed to reach the next stages of assessor training & evaluation at upcoming events. 



Another successful skills event has recently been undertaken in Slovenia hosted by ABA Centre SGLS Postojna. The event included training & assessment in chainsaw & tree climbing skills which involved over 25 participants and support staff from ABA International. The new International/European chainsaw safety at heights qualification-A2 was successfully completed by some of the candidates during the 3-day event. Assessor workshops were also undertaken & new ABA skills assessors were trained and evaluated during the event.



ABA International skills trainers, assessors & verifiers held their latest assessor training event in Romania. The event took place over 5 days located in the Carpathian Mountains with the support of the University of Transylvania. The event was led by experienced skills verifiers from Great Britain, Czech Republic & Denmark during splendid spring sunshine.

The key focus of this event was on technical standard setting for chainsaw skill levels 1-3. The successful assessor workshops included mock and live candidate tests. New ABA accredited certificate holders have now been registered on the international database whilst unsuccessful participants plan to be re-assessed during further events. Further progress and current research on the Vet-Safety project was discussed and ideas exchanged.