© Gadbois Photography
On July 30th, youth from Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation) celebrated the completion of an intensive 4-week training program to enhance traditional knowledge and develop instructional skills to provide interpretation to students and adults alike.
The Cheakamus Centre campus served as home base, with experiential lessons led by elders and other experts using the teaching longhouse, coastal rainforest, and Spakwus House classrooms. As part of the graduation ceremony, students demonstrated their newly acquired interpretive skills to a receptive audience of family, staff and Friends of Cheakamus members.
These dynamic young graduates will contribute their enthusiasm and knowledge in the delivery of both new and longstanding programs, such as the provincially recognized Skw'une-was overnight program for Grade 3 students, at the longhouse at Cheakamus Centre. The graduates’ learning journey continues with additional cultural teachings and the completion of high school diplomas and post-secondary degrees.
This pilot program is part of a larger campus renewal initiative currently underway at Cheakamus Centre that will see a revitalization of facilities and programming over the next several years. Funding for this program was provided to the Cheakamus Foundation for Environmental Learning by RBC Future Launch and the Vancouver Foundation.