A mini big house called Kwanwatsi Bidu was built for Kwanwatsi Child Care Centre this year so the children can enjoy learning more about their culture. The Bidu was blessed at the June 22 graduation ceremony. It was designed by daycare dads Ty Cranmer and Ernie Puglas and built by Dusty Price.
The Kwanwatsi Child Care Centre will be able to increase its language and cultural training activities thanks to an increased grant from the Language Nest Program offered by the First Peoples’ Cultural Council.
Kwanwatsi has received approval of three-year funding of $50,000 a year, up from $20,000 a year received previously. This will allow the centre to hire two Elders to work with children and staff one hour a day, starting this September.
The First Peoples’ Cultural Council is a First Nations-run Crown Corporation with a mandate to support the revitalization of Indigenous languages, arts, culture and heritage in British Columbia.
The goal of the Language Nest Program is to create new language speakers by creating language and cultural immersion environments for preschool age children and their parents to become fluent in their First Nations languages. In Language Nests, young children are immersed in the language, parents are encouraged to participate, and staff, volunteers, and Elders carry out daily activities in the language with the children.