Heritage Saskatchewan always looks forward to Heritage Week, a whole week dedicated to celebrating the heritage of our wonderful province, and this year was no exception!
Heritage Saskatchewan organized three great events designed to explore living heritage. The first, run by our very own Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) Development Officer, Kristin Catherwood, was a workshop designed for those new to the concept of ICH. The session aimed to give participants an understanding of what ICH is and how it weaves itself into our daily lives, both on an individual and community level.
We hosted a KAIROS blanket exercise, a teaching tool used to share the historic and contemporary relationship between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples in Canada. This was a very thought-provoking experience for all involved and prompted lots of interesting discussion and time for reflection.
Following on from this, we heard from Wanuskewin Heritage Park about its bid for World Heritage Designation and the tireless efforts of its dynamic team of volunteers to raise both funds and profile for its ‘Thundering Ahead’ renewal project.
Separate to our own events, Heritage Saskatchewan attended the Yorkton Film Festival film night that we sponsored, watching the screening of “Reserve 107, Reconciliation on the Prairies”. This film told the inspiring story of how an old land title injustice has resulted in the coming together of an Indigenous First Nations band, and Mennonite and Lutheran communities to right the wrongs of the past. The alliance between the three groups has led to strong bonds and friendships being formed. You can find out more about this documentary here.
The Government of Saskatchewan put on an interesting session on Wednesday, showcasing some successful main street and downtown rejuvenation projects throughout Saskatchewan. Heritage Saskatchewan’s Kristin Catherwood also presented at this event. Kristin talked about the Coal in Coronach project that she did last year, where she used the lens of heritage to stimulate conversations in the Coronach community about its future as the use of coal gradually gets phased out by the Canadian Government.
On Thursday evening, we attended the Saskatchewan Heritage Foundation’s annual reception. This was a really great opportunity to find out about the amazing work that the Foundation is doing to help Saskatchewan communities preserve their heritage. We heard from some of the grant recipients and learned how the funding is being used to repair and preserve structures that would otherwise fall in to disrepair. Also present were three of the students that have participated in Heritage Saskatchewan’s Heritage Fairs program, which is also funded in part by the Foundation. The students told the audience about their own experiences in the fairs and how important heritage is to them.