A walk/ride from the site of the former St. Joseph’s Mission Residential School to Esk’et has been postponed until Aug. 20 -22.
Organizer Ashley George said the route for the “Bringing the spirits of our children home,” event has also changed and will avoid walking on Highway 97 and 20 entirely.
“We are going to take the same route that a lot of our elders used when they ran away from the school,” George said.
The walkers and riders will still depart on Friday, Aug. 20 at 9 a.m. from the residential school site on Mission Road, head south toward Onward Ranch then over the mountain by road to Felker Lake the first day.
After camping at Felker Lake, the group will head out on Saturday, Aug. 21, along Chimney Valley Road, turning on Dog Creek Road until they reach Two Mile, just past Springhouse, where they will camp.
Sunday, Aug. 22, the final destination will be the Esk’et powwow arbour where there will be a final ceremony where the youth will present gifts to the community’s residential school survivors.
“We have been trying to have more opportunities for the younger generation and the elders to come together and revitalize our language,” George said. “The majority of our community does not know our own language due to the residential school era.”
As she is in her 30s, George did not attend residential school but her parents and grandparents all did.
“The effect it had on them passed down to me. I was raised by my grandparents.”
Anyone wanting to support the walk as a volunteer doing set up or take down at each venue is asked to contact George by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Any donations of water bottles, Gatorade or snack items would also be greatly appreciated.