ALERT BAY, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - July 21, 2014) - Department of Canadian Heritage
The Government of Canada has provided the U'mista Cultural Society with support of $50,000 through the Museums Assistance Program toward the U'mista Cultural Centre's Potlatch Collection exhibition upgrade project.
Funding will enable the Society to address the protection needs of artifacts on display from its nationally significant Potlatch Collection; create an interactive, hands-on learning area; develop educational programming; purchase and install audiovisual equipment; and improve visitor seating. The project will result in a modernized gallery with diversified educational offerings and improved care of artifacts on long-term display.
The Honourable John Duncan, Minister of State and Member of Parliament (Vancouver Island North), announced this funding today on behalf of the Honourable Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages.
•The U'mista Cultural Society was founded in 1974 with a mandate to ensure the survival of the cultural heritage and language of the Kwakwaka'wakw people.
•The U'mista Cultural Society operates the U'mista Cultural Centre, a museum and cultural education facility. The Centre, built in 1980, was one of the first to house repatriated potlatch artifacts and is one of the longest-operating First Nations cultural facilities in British Columbia.
•Recently, much of the Potlatch Collection has been travelling internationally as part of an exhibition co-produced with Germany's Dresden Museum. This has provided an opportunity to upgrade the museum in order to improve the display and learning areas of this collection.
•The Museums Assistance Program provides funding to Canadian museums and related institutions for projects that foster excellence in museum activities and that facilitate access to the treasures of our collective heritage.
"Our Government is pleased to invest in projects that contribute to our nation's identity. I commend the efforts of the U'mista Cultural Society for ensuring that Canadians can access and learn about the important history and traditions of our First Nations."
-The Honourable Shelly Glover, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages
"U'mista's celebrated Potlatch Collection is a source of national pride. Our Government is very pleased to support the preservation of Kwakwaka'wakw traditions for generations to come."
-The Honourable John Duncan, Minister of State and Member of Parliament (Vancouver Island North)
"We are grateful to the Government of Canada for its support of the U'mista Cultural Society. With this grant from Canadian Heritage, we will update the display of U'mista's historic, world-renowned Potlatch Collection to maximize its potential as a catalyst for learning by creating a hands-on gallery and including new types of experiences through our film and audio collections, while also ensuring the treasures on display are properly preserved."
-Sarah Holland, Executive Director, U'mista Cultural Society
U'mista Cultural Society
Museums Assistance Program
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VANCOUVER, British Columbia, July 17, 2014 /CNW/ -- The Heiltsuk Nation and Interfor are working together, with support from the Sustainable Forestry Initiative ® Inc. (SFI®) on a project that will improve the understanding and management of culturally modified trees (CMTs), an important pre- and post contact heritage feature on British Columbia's Pacific Coast.
The project, funded with a conservation grant from SFI, will record, track, manage and interpret, culturally modified trees through spatial analysis in geographic information systems (GIS). Culturally modified trees have been altered by First Nations people as part of their traditional reliance on forest resources. They may have a wide variety of features including scars where planks or bark have been removed. Trees altered before 1846 are protected under BC Heritage Conservation Act.
"This project helps preserve historically important features," says Kathy Abusow, President and CEO of SFI Inc. "We are honoured to be able to help the Heiltsuk people document their history and support the advancement of learning for forest companies in the area."
"Culturally modified trees preserve a partial, but compelling record of Heiltsuk presence on the land and utilization of forest resources, and are an integral part of our culture and heritage," says Jennifer Carpenter, Culture & Heritage Manager for the Heiltsuk Nation. "Detailed analysis of CMT types and locations helps us track and monitor these and other archeological features so they can be protected."
"We recognize the unique ties that the Heiltsuk have to their lands and this project will help us to better identify, respect and manage this unique heritage resource," says Rhiannon Poupard, Manager, First Nations & Forestry Partnerships for Interfor. "The database will help us fill in any gaps, and through spatial analysis in GIS we can produce maps and reports that improve our forest management."
The work will take place in the traditional territory of the Heiltsuk Nation, which includes much of the area known as the Great Bear Rainforest.
Many forest operations in the region are certified to the SFI standard, and information gained through the database research will be shared with local First Nations and forest professionals. The two-year project received $66,000 from the 2014 SFI Conservation and Community Partnerships Grant Program.
Since 2010, SFI has awarded more than 50 conservation partnership grants totaling more than $1.9 million to support projects that promote sustainable forestry practices and engage communities. When leveraged with project partner contributions, that total investment exceeds $7.1 million.
For more information about The SFI Conservation Grant Program, visit sfiprogram.org/community-conservation/conservation-community-partnerships-grant-program/.
About SFI Inc.
SFI Inc. is an independent, nonprofit organization that is solely responsible for maintaining, overseeing and improving the internationally recognized Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI®) program. Across the United States and Canada, more than 100 million hectares are certified to the SFI forest management standard. In addition, the SFI program's unique fiber sourcing requirements promote responsible forest management on all suppliers' lands. SFI chain-of-custody (COC) certification tracks the percentage of fiber from certified forests, certified sourcing and post-consumer recycled content. SFI on-product labels identify both certified sourcing and COC claims to help consumers make responsible purchasing decisions. SFI Inc. is governed by a three-chamber board of directors representing environmental, social and economic sectors equally. Learn more at sfiprogram.org and sfiprogram.org/Buy-SFI/.
About The Heiltsuk Nation
The Heiltsuk Nation is centred in the community of Bella Bella. Descendants of its first generations have lived in what is now British Columbia's Central Coast region for over 10,000 years. To learn more about the Heiltsuk culture and history, visit www.hcec.ca/main.html
Interfor is a growth-oriented lumber company with operations in Canada and the United States. The Company has annual production capacity of 2.6 billion board feet and offers one of the most diverse lines of lumber products to customers around the world. For more information about Interfor, visit www.interfor.com.
SOURCE SFI Inc.