Story Trail with Secwepemctsin Language Students’ Voices

Posted On Tuesday June 11, 2019

The Tsutswecw Park Story Trail featuring Chase Secondary students and teacher voices is now open. 

Using QR codes, they recorded stories of native plants and landscape features along the trail in the park, built on the traditional territory of the Secwepemc people. 

“I am so gratified, I can’t wait to see what these students will do next,” said Ivy Chelsea, Secwepemctsin Language Teacher. “It is about the beauty of spirit. Something you can’t see. Something that comes from love and respect. When it is positive, it spreads so much further. That’s what I feel about this project. It’s going to go so much further than Tsutswecw Park.”

The Story Trail is a collaboration between BC Parks Foundation and BC Parks, with the support of the Little Shuswap Lake, Adams Lake and Neskonlith bands, Chase Secondary School, School District No. 73 (SD73), the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation (WildBC) and the Adams Lake Division of Interfor, who donated local cedar for trail signage. 

“We are proud of this innovative partnership which demonstrates a commitment to including Aboriginal worldviews through hands-on learning experiences,” said Alison Sidow, SD73 Superintendent of Schools. “Ivy Chelsea has done remarkable work engaging with partners to bring relevant and meaningful learning to her students and the community.”

It’s the first trail of its kind in Canada, combining nature, technology and Indigenous stories. 

“We hope it will inspire people to get outside, enjoy nature, and encourage them to care for the land, and protect it,” said Jennifer McCaffrey, noting that BC Parks Foundation is working on several more similar projects for the province. 

A special ceremony on June 7 marked the opening of the trail. Visitors can scan the signage along the trail to hear stories about nature and culture reflecting the rich history of the land. 

“The Story Trails project will give British Columbians a better appreciation of Indigenous culture and Indigenous peoples’ deep connection to the land. I am delighted to see youth, First Nations and community partners come together to create a unique and meaningful experience for visitors in our beautiful provincial parks,” said George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Cultural Strategy. 

See related story: Chase Secondary Students Contribute SEcwepemc Language and Culture to Province's First Story Trail (CFJC)




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