Marin Patenaude (left) talks about the Potato House Sustainable Living Society's community compost project as Orden Mack

Marin Patenaude (left) talks about the Potato House Sustainable Living Society's community compost project as Orden Mack

Fraser River rafters welcomed in lakecity

Five youth leaders running the Fraser River this month stopped in Williams Lake this week to learn about sustainability projects.

Chris Hornby

Special to The Tribune/Weekend Advisor

The B.C. Rivershed Society’s Sustainable Living Leadership team running the Fraser River this summer was treated to several activities and meals during their stop over at Williams Lake this week.

The group visited Xat’sull Heritage Village at Soda Creek Sunday where they were treated to a traditional First Nations pit-cooked dinner, learned about various cultural traditions and slept in teepees.

Monday the group set up camp on the banks of the Fraser River below the Sheep Creek Bridge where Department of Fisheries and Oceans representatives gave them a demonstration on juvenile fish netting.

Later Monday afternoon volunteer drivers brought the team to Williams Lake where former Sustainable Living Leadership team members Mary Forbes and Marin Patenaude introduced them to the Potato House Sustainability Project. This project includes a garden and compost program on the grounds of the heritage house.

After this demonstration, volunteers from the Williams Lake Field Naturalists treated the group to a potluck dinner at the Scout Island Nature Centre.

After dinner forestry environmental consultant, Richard Case, gave a presentation on the work of the Williams Lake Transition Town Group. The Transition Town movement started in England as a grassroots way to build resilience and create economic sustainability in communities.

There are 17 core members in the local Transition Town group who hold public film and discussion nights once a month in the arts centre next to city hall.

The group also has a book and video lending library.

After Case’s presentation volunteers shuttled the voyageurs back to their camp for the night.

Orden Mack of Williams Lake is one of this summer’s five young people from around the province selected by the B.C. Rivershed Society to travel the 1,400 kilometre length of the Fraser River by canoe, raft, shuttle van and on foot.

The young adventurers, accompanied by several guides, left the Fraser River headwaters near Mount Robson on July 31 and are scheduled to arrive in Vancouver on Aug. 23.

While learning about sustainability on their journey each of the participants is also creating a sustainability project to initiate in their home community following their adventure.

Mack is documenting the trip and working with the Moccasin Footprint Society to educate people about the positive contributions of Aboriginal people.