CLBC hosts land acknowledgement ceremony in Tkʼemlúps te Secwépemc traditional territory

Artist Lyle Paul stands next to his artwork that is displayed on a wall.

Lyle Paul, Secwépemc, reveals his artwork and tells the story and inspiration behind it.

CLBC’s Kamloops office recently hosted a land acknowledgement ceremony to show recognition and respect for the unceded traditional ancestral territory of the Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc peoples, situated within the unceded traditional lands of the Secwépemc Nation whose land our office resides on.   

About 70 individuals from various backgrounds came together to celebrate the occasion. Among the attendees were members of the Secwépemc Nation, families, Community Council members, CLBC staff, self-advocates and service providers.    

The ceremony began with a blessing and teaching by Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc Elder Russel, who enlightened the audience on the significance of commencing gatherings with prayers or blessings, extending goodwill to all those present and their families.   

Drummers filled the space with a Welcome song and an Honour song, followed by local Secwépemc artist Lyle Paul, who shared his inspiration and creative process behind the artwork he created for the space.    

Brenda Duggan, CLBC Indigenous Relations Practice Advisor, presented tokens of gratitude to the Tk̓emlúps te Secwépemc Nation in the form of tobacco, teas, and medicinal balm from the Gitxan community, as well as polished Agates from the local area, as a symbol of CLBC’s sincere appreciation.    

The practice of acknowledging Indigenous Traditional Territories is particularly important to CLBC as it aligns with our government mandate to adopt and implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action. It is also a critical part of CLBC’s commitment to building relationships with Indigenous communities.    

Guiding principles and processes for the display of Indigenous artwork, signage and/or land acknowledgments have been developed to enhance the cultural safety and inclusivity within our offices.

A group of Indigenous women and men play traditional drums as a ceremony inside an office.

Drummers presenting the Welcome song and Honour song.

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