Category Archives: Diversity

Building Cultural Competency


A group of 13 ladies met yesterday @ the Space to help supporting Vita’s trip to the Philippines, building relationships and cultural competence.
The group would like to thank CNC for providing the facility to meet. I had a meeting with two ladies this morning. They provided great positive feedback and some future meeting in reporting about the trip evening and other ideas.




From Fiji to Canada


Impressions of Vanderhoof:

Very friendly everyone says hello. They found that in bigger cities like Vancouver people kept to themselves and found it very hard to feel ‘community’


Transportation is a big issue. The ladies from Fiji have a hard time getting around and don’t get to town much.

Interesting fact:

Cows are the most aggressive animal in Fiji.  If you wear red ‘watch out’

Vanderhoof is much different than Fiji because in Fiji everyone has their own plantation and relies only on that for food

Hard to find the food here and it is expensive for what they find naturally/wild in Fiji (guava, coconut, mango)

 Funny fact

Because of being settled by the English, both the language is taught (accent) and they drive on the right hand side of the road so in Canada they always walk to the wrong door!!!!



Community Dialogue

Please join us at the 2012 Community Dialogue

featuring the Ambassador Program.

You are invited to participate in a dialogue on how Vanderhoof can be a welcoming place for all.

There will be a panel representing new Canadians, and a presentation of the Saik’uz & Settlers Teachers Resource featuring the Ambassador Program for Youth. There will be opportunities for connection, learning and action.

This workshop is for leaders and citizens interested in learning from each other about the promise and potential of living in a diverse and welcoming Vanderhoof.

Snacks and beverages will be served.

7—9 pm, Thursday, November 29, 2012 Village Inn

RSVP by November 27 to Charlyne Smilinski,
CNC-Nechako at (250) 567-3211 or

Ambassador Team

The Ambassador Team is an initiative of the Good Neighbours Committee.

Be an Activist This Month!

February is Black History Month!

“African-American history is filled with the tales of inspiring individuals—many of whom overcame great odds to leave their mark on the [Civil Rights movement] … examine the lives of African-Americans who have made extraordinary achievements in their fields, including inventors such as George Washington Carver; activists like Malcolm X and Rosa Parks; athletes such as Willie Mays and Michael Jordan; and entertainers like Bessie Smith and Oprah Winfrey. Their names, and their stories, have become synonymous with the rich legacy that is African-American culture” (source).

Did you know?

  • The earliest Black communities were established in the Maritime Provinces; Birchtown, Nova Scotia became the largest settlement of free Africans outside Africa (source).
  • African-American surgeon Charles R. Drew is credited with the invention of the first large-scale blood bank.
  • August 1619: The first Africans as slave labour were introduced in America. A Dutch trader exchanged his cargo of 20 Africans for food in Jamestown, Virginia. It is believed that these Africans were sold into conditions similar to indentured servitude – a common practice in England and colonial America. The American slavery system became more codified in its inhumane treatment around 1680 (source).
  • 1839: Joseph Cinque lead 37 African slaves in a revolt aboard the Amistad slave ship, killing the captain and taking control of the ship. The ship was later recaptured by the U.S. The matter was tried in the Supreme Court, where it was ordered that the slaves be returned to Africa and freed (source).
  • 1849: Harriet Tubman (1820 – 1913) escaped from slavery and became one of the most celebrated and effective leaders of the Underground Railroad. Harriet Tubman lead hundreds of slaves to freedom before and during the war. She was never captured while rescuing slaves and, as quoted, she “never lost a passenger” (source).

Take some time to explore Black History this month… You will definitely come across some new and interesting facts! Here are some great links:

take a stand against bullying – wear pink on February 29th!

We encourage everyone to support Pink Shirt Day on February 29, 2012. It promotes a message of inclusiveness and anti-bullying. Pink Shirt Day started when two young men, David Shepherd and Travis Price, high school seniors at Central Kings Rural High School in Nova Scotia in 1997 saw a young man in their school being bullied for his choice of clothing and took a stand against it. By encouraging all students to wear pink, boys and girls, they made a statement and took a stand against bullying that spoke volumes and changed the climate of a school, and that change has now rippled across the country.

Our schools have many events planned to celebrate Pink Shirt Day and highlight the zero tolerance for bullying in our community. Let us join them in showing our support for a community void of bullying!

We can through our actions and choices allow the voice of the weaker or the more isolated to be heard. To create a safe environment for everyone in community; to have a dialogue about issues rather than a debate; to seek to understand rather than assume; to listen rather than be heard. We can speak out against bullying and work towards a community that belongs to everyone. The Good Neighbours Committee works towards the goal of a welcoming and inclusive community for all and invites community members to participate in the many projects happening through the Spirit of Vanderhoof Diversity Project, Legacy Initiatives. For more information about Pink Shirt Day, go to

– Omineca Express

Next Month: Aboriginal Awareness Week

This year, Aboriginal Awareness Week will take place during the week of March 5-9. Contact Jasmine Thomas at 250-981-6492 or Sarah John at to find out details about activities and to get involved!

January/February Events in Vanderhoof!

Check out these events happening in Vanderhoof!:

  • Head to Neighbourhood Space every Monday and Friday, 10am-1pm, for Good Neighbours’ Day! Enjoy some soup or sandwiches and a hot cup of coffee while shooting some pool or catching up with your neighbours!
  • Check out the Saik’uz and Settlers Legacy Project Discussion Session! Join us at the Neighbourhood Space (on Highway 16, next to Subway) for a series of informal gatherings to discuss specific events and time periods in Vanderhoof’s history. Everyone is welcome to participate and share their experiences, thoughts and memories. From January 26th to March 1st, 2012. 7-9pm. See dates below.

Where we Belong

Quotes from Vanderhoofians:
We came because of the abundance of land.
Some families have worked this land for generations.
The sky is always open and welcoming.
The wildlife is incredible.
Creatures great and small call Vanderhoof their home.
Some enjoy Vanderhoof for the peace and quiet.
The people are friendly and we tend to know everyone.
We enjoy the simple things in life.
It is a great place to raise a family.
It is a great place to grow young.
We have rush minute in Vanderhoof.
Everyone is tight knit. People gather in groups to quilt and craft.
Some came for the work and decided to stay.
Commitment and determination are some of the values we hold.
Seasonally people gather to hunt and fish.
When you see Sinkut Mountain, you know that you are home.
Vanderhoof has a small town feel, it is comfortable here.
Our community is diverse and interesting.
Our community is diverse and we wouldn’t want it any other way.
Newcomers feel warm and welcome.
We respect and celebrate our differences.