Winds of Change puts focus on youth 

Bike park, skate park in Pemberton result in part from community cooperation

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One of the recommendations was putting together the wellness gathering, which draws hundreds of people from Mount Currie and Pemberton every year. This year's gathering invited students from Xit'olacw Community School in Mount Currie and Pemberton Secondary School for the motivational talk from Kevin Brooks, as well as a free lunch, workshops and trade shows all oriented around wellness.

Another recommendation was creating more recreational and leisure infrastructure, a goal that was met with the completion this year of a skateboard park next to the community centre.

The skate park wasn't an idea that flowed solely from Winds of Change, but as Sheldon Tetreault, an early proponent of Winds of Change told it, it was certainly an important development in providing youth with more options for recreational activities.

"As a community we have to continue to try to build these kinds of options for youth," he said.

"We have every local government, every service organization in the health and social services in this valley on our committee. When we say we support an initiative or proposal going forward, that means a lot to that funder, because they've got the support of all these groups behind them."

Susie Gimse, a councillor with the Village of Pemberton and director for Area C of the Squamish-Lillooet Regional District, agreed that providing recreational options for youth is important.

"We have known here in this community, all of us... that there just was not enough for youth to do," she said.

"The skateboard park, (and) the water park are absolutely initiatives that have been ... supported by local government because you have to remember the skateboard park had a tremendous amount of support from community members."

And what's next for Winds of Change, now that recreational amenities have arrived? Gimse suggests they might not be done.

"I think it's incumbent on all three of the communities to work together and identify the recreation priorities and work towards getting it done," she said.

 

Winds of Change Award Winners announced

 

The Winds of Change Wellness Gathering also handed out awards to various community members in Pemberton, Mount Currie and Area C.

Recipients of the North Wind Award, for promoting healthy lifestyle choices, included Dr. Hugh Fisher for Pemberton; Clara John and Barry Dan for N'Quatqua; and Delores Los for Area C.

Shannon Ellis of the Pemberton Public Library received the South Wind Award for increasing awareness of health resources around the Pemberton Valley.

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