Nicola Valley Institute of Technology New ECE Bursary

New bursary for early childhood educators

Students enrolling or enrolled in the early childhood education program (ECE) at the Nicola Valley Institute of Technology or any of the other 33 programs like it across B.C. are getting new support from the province.

On April 23, Minister of Children and Family Development Stephanie Cadieux was at NVIT to announce the provincial government is investing $513,000 to boost the number of early childhood educators in B.C.

The funds will go to the Early Childhood Educators of BC, the province’s professional association, to establish a bursary for ECE program students and applicants.

The bursary will allow students to apply for up to $300 per course to a maximum of $1,500 per semester.

“We’re committed to increasing the number of qualified early childhood educators throughout the province,” Cadieux said at Wednesday’s announcement, noting that since 2007, the government has provided about $1.5 million to 1,300 students in ECE programs in B.C. through bursaries.

The bursary will give preference to aboriginal students, students attending an ECE program with an aboriginal focus and students working to achieve an infant/toddler education designation.

“It’s because we recognize that there is a special need for aboriginal early childhood educators that priority will be given to aboriginal students and students attending ECE programs with an aboriginal focus, much like the programs that are offered here at NVIT,” Cadieux said.

“This will help us achieve our vision of aboriginal children staying connected to their culture and traditions,” she said.

Denyse Oswald-Finch, department head for NVIT’s aboriginal early childhood education program, said many of their first-year students find work in their field between years and don’t return to school, making this bursary helpful to second-year students.

“It’ll help a lot of the second-year students stay and actually finish the second year,” she said. “I think that bursary will keep a lot students carrying on their education and finishing the two years,” Oswald-Finch said.

This year, NVIT had eight second-year students in its ECE program.

The five employees of the NVIT daycare are graduates of their program.

First-year NVIT ECE student Dayna Charters said she’s excited for her second year in the program and excited about the bursary.

“I’m going to apply,” she said.

NVIT dean John Chenoweth said financial access to education is a barrier for many people.

“By having some funding available to support students to pursue education, we all win,” Chenoweth said.

Early Childhood Educators of BC executive director Emily Mlieczko said that with this bursary, more people will be able to access education in this area.

“While there is always that demand for new childcare spaces, that demand also then requires qualified early childhood educators to care for our youngest learners,” Cadieux said.

Fraser-Nicola MLA Jackie Tegart said she thinks the bursary will benefit those who choose to complete an ECE program at NVIT.

Métis jigging group dancin’ up a storm, Merritt BC

Nine-year-old Jorden Petersen practises the broom dance with Lucier, who stood in for dancer Dani Turmel, also nine, who was away sick.
Emily Wessel/Herald


A new dance group has sprung up in Merritt. The Métis jiggers are a group of young girls who are dancing to connect with their Métis roots. In six months of practices, the four group members have learned jigging steps and five dances. Instructor Colleen Lucier comes from Kamloops at least once a month to teach the dancers Métis jigging steps. Between lessons, the girls practice on their own. So far, the girls’ practice seems to be paying off.

While Lucier said it took her about a year to learn one particularly complicated step called “around the world,” 11-year-old Talyn Ferch said it took her one session to learn it.

Ferch said she and some of the other girls jig during recess at Diamond Vale Elementary.
“They’re all naturals at it,” Lucier said. Lucier is aided by local volunteer Cecilia Dumont, who helps the girls fine-tune their steps.

“We wanted to see children and teenagers try to find a way to get them off the streets and show them how an activity of the Métis can be,” Dumont said.
“They’ve been doing very well,” she added.

Ferch said her favourite dance is the sash dance, which involves she and 11-year-old Mackenzie Wray doing the “around the world” step over a pair of crossed sashes. “Your sash dance is influenced by Scottish dancing because our culture was influenced by First Nations and different Europeans,” Lucier told the girls at a practice at Merritt Moms on April 16.

Nine-year-old Jorden Petersen said her favourite dance is the broom dance, in which she passes a broom quickly between her hands underneath her legs. “Right now, we’re practising perfection, because we’re trying to make it go faster,” Ferch said at their practice.

Although its current members are all girls between nine and 11, the group is open to boys as well and has no age restrictions. Lucier said the group she dances with in Kamloops is mostly adults, but in Merritt, youth have taken to it. “Our work is to help youth and families feel that sense of belonging, and dancing is a great way and it’s been a fun way to listen to our music and meet our elders and learn some of our culture,” she said. Further, she said, you don’t have to be Métis to dance with the jiggers. The troupe will have its first performance at the Métis community potluck on April 25 starting at 5 p.m. at the cadet hall.

“We’re available to perform at local functions and highlight our Métis culture and the local Métis culture. There’s a large Métis community in Merritt that I wasn’t aware of until I got connected to the Métis people here,” Lucier said.

Metis Community Services Society of BC Job Posting

#201 – 2949 Pandosy St., Kelowna, BC V1Y 1W1
Phone: 250-868-0351 Fax: 250-868-0359 Website:

Position Summary
The Métis Community Services Society of BC (MCSBC) has a mandate from the Métis citizens to provide integrated, holistic, family centered, wrap-around services to all those who need assistance, with special emphasis on Aboriginal populations, specifically Métis populations. We are responsible for the development and implementation of a full complement of child services from preventative to Child Protection, via a unique relationship where co-located MCFD social workers are in our office working closely with the team and management.

MCSBC is currently seeking a qualified full time Aboriginal Child and Youth Trauma Therapist. The Aboriginal Child and Youth Trauma Therapist promotes culturally appropriate services that focus therapy supports, tools and service to support and foster a healthy Aboriginal family system, in a wrap-around style of service. The MCSBC Aboriginal Child and Youth Trauma Therapist works closely with the Métis Family Therapist; answering to the Executive Director, and promotes a positive and healthy lifestyle.

Therapist will provide direct therapeutic services to Aboriginal children, youth and their families using trauma informed evidenced based practice interventions that can specifically address traumatic symptoms or experiences due to abuse, neglect, unplanned separation or other traumas. Individual and family interventions will be tailored for implementation in the home environment. Therapist will work a flexible work schedule to allow for after school and evening appointments, as necessary.

The MCSBC Aboriginal Child and Youth Trauma Therapist shall be responsible for the following:
• Works as part of a multidisciplinary team with a wrap-around style to perform assessments, coordinate client care, and provide treatment services that are culturally appropriate for Métis/Aboriginal children and youth with severe mental health issues and personal trauma, family loss, and intergenerational loss.
• Conducts psychosocial assessment on Métis children and youth experiencing severe behavioural, social, emotional disturbances and serious mental health problems.
• Collaborates with multidisciplinary team and consults with provides treatment services that are sensitive to Métis/Aboriginal culture.
• Establishes and maintains relationships based on respect and understanding initiates and participates in weekly Métis clinical support meetings.
• Work closely with and upon the advice of the Métis Family Therapist who will serve as a mentor the Metis Child and Youth Trauma Therapist.
• Experience working with varied family systems, including extended family, foster parents, and adoptive parents.
• Taking part in community events will be part of job requirement.

• Graduation with a Master’s degree from a recognized university with acceptable specialization in clinical, forensic or counselling psychology or in another psychological specialty relevant to the position.
• Accreditation through British Columbia Association of Clinical Councilors OR Canadian Counseling Association.
• Knowledge of Aboriginal culture with preference to Métis culture, general lifestyle of Aboriginal people and traditional lifestyles.
• Experience in the provision of psychological services (including mental health services), such as assessment, counseling or other psychological services with Aboriginal children and youth.
• Knowledge of social, cultural and recreational needs and interests of Métis and other urban Aboriginal families, children and youth.
• Ability to work professionally, collaboratively with Metis/Aboriginal families as well as MCFD, MCSBC personnel and the Métis community.
• Satisfactory criminal records check.
• Excellent written and oral communication skills.

• High level of motivation and ability to work with minimal supervision
• Team player
• Personal, approachable and supportive demeanor to work with Métis/Aboriginal Families
• High level of enthusiasm
• Ability to work well with others
• Ability to handle high levels of stress when necessary and ability to adapt well to changing circumstances

Interested applicants are invited to submit a detailed resume and cover letter, including three references via EMAIL to:

#201 – 2949 Pandosy St.
Kelowna, BC V1Y 1W1
Attn: Kelly L’Hirondelle

Deadline for Applications: May 15th, 2014 at 4:00pm.

MCSBC is exempt and allowed to give preference in hiring Métis applicants under Section 16 of Federal Charter of Human Rights Act

Vernon and District Metis Association Events

***We are proud to announce that our ladies group will be started at our office building in the board room, #102 3207 30th ave Vernon BC.

VDMA treasurer & women’s rep Wendy Chambers and VDMA Secretary & New horizons elder have many great plans from beading, moose hide campaign, leather work and much much more for this.
The AHIP women’s group funding will be in soon and we have many great gifts and experiences for the women who participate. We are looking for 15 plus women to come and participate every second Sunday with the ladies of the community on building healthy living, Mental health and community togetherness. If you have any questions or would like to participate please come down to the ladies group and find out the great things we have planned for the woman of our community, or call myself @ 250-306-5658

Woman’s Group dates-April 27th 2014 12pm-3p
-May 4th 2014 12pm-3pm
-May 22nd 2014 6pm-8pm

More dates will be announced shortly as the participating women figure out the dates and times that work for everyone. Stay tuned on our website and Facebook group page.***

***Annual Roots Aboriginal Gathering May 23rd- 25th @ Pillar Lake, Falkland BC
There will be cultural events occurring ( dance, performances, mini pow-wow and traditional food) There are camping sites available and a weekend of fun is planned. We look forward to seeing everyone out there

***Elders for New Horizons Spaghetti Dinner & Loonie Auction June 1st @ St James Catholic School 2700-28th Avenue, Vernon, BC V1T 1V7 Doors open @ 5pmThe Elders for New Horizons with the help of the VDMA will be putting on a spaghetti dinner and loonie auction to raise awareness and funds for our elders group. There will be special guest speakers and much entertainment for all. It will be $6 a person in advance or $7 at the door.

****Drum Making Workshop Sat June 7th and 21st @ #102 3207 30th ave Vernon BC 10am-2pm Vernon & District Secretary Linda Van Wieringen and Treasurer/ Women’s Rep Wendy Chambers successfully got a proposal for a drum making class and have secured the funding to put it on. They will be showing how to make the drum, paint the drum, bead work on the drum sticks and much more. As it can take a couple weeks for the drum to be ready for painting and other work they have spaced out the workshops to accommodate for it. This will be a great thing as everyone will get to make their own personally drum to have for our gatherings and forever.

**** Vernon & District Metis Association Community potluck BBQ August 10th 10am-6pm @ Coldstream Park (1898 kalamalka rd Vernon BC V1T 2Y5)The Vernon & District Metis Association is happy to announce that our summer community potluck/ BBQ will be held at Coldstream Park. The same Park as last year, just below Coldstream elementary school. We look forward to seeing everyone there and enjoying a sun filled day with games, music and great food. We have much to celebrate this year such as equipment grants, CCAY completion, Walk/Run proposal, woman’s group and I could go on 🙂

Bring you favorite food to share with the community and we will supply hot dogs and burgers

I believe that is most of what’s coming up around our area for the next few months. I will let you know when we secure dates for walk and run.

Merritt Metis Community Pot Luck


Metis Community Pot Luck

When: Friday April 25, 2014
Time: 5:00 PM
Location: Merritt Cadet Hall 1755 Coldwater Avenue, Merritt BC


Face Painting, Games for Kids, Jigging, Bannock and Music

Information to follow

MNBC Registry Representation on Site for Citizenship Application

For more information contact: Deedee 250-378-6461 or Barb 250-378-6981

Aboriginal Sport, Recreation & Physical Activity Partners Council


Call for volunteer assistant coaches, managers, chaperones for various vacancies remaining for Team BC for the 2014 North American Indigenous Games

The Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council (Partners Council) is accepting applications for various volunteer assistant coach, manager or chaperone positions to serve on Team BC for the 2014 North American Indigenous Games (NAIG). The 2014 NAIG will take place July 20-26, 2014 in Regina, Saskatchewan with Team BC travel days of July 19 and July 27. Team BC will include approximately 500 athletes, coaches and mission staff participating in 13 sports. Serving as a member of the approximately 100 volunteer Team BC coaching staff for NAIG will be a once in a lifetime experience!

For more information and to apply for one these vacant volunteer roles, please visit to complete an online application or download the hard copy version of the application form below. You are encouraged to submit the application together with your coaching/sport resume and letters of reference or endorsement.

This intake of applications closes Monday, May 5th, 4PM PST.

Application Package:
• Downloadable Application Form
• Online Application Form
• Online 2014 NAIG Sport Technical Package

For more info on 2014 NAIG visit or For more information on the Aboriginal Sport, Recreation and Physical Activity Partners Council and Team BC, visit

South Okanagan Similkameen Metis Association


South Okanagan Similkameen Metis Association Beading Workshop

When: May 3-4, 2014 and May 10-11, 2014

Time: 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM

Location: Penticton Health Center, Multi-Purpose Room 13B 740 Carmi Avenue, Penticton BC

Includes: Lunchs, supplies and an instruction manual. Seating is limited to 20 participants (over the age of 14).

Your place will be confirmed once the registration fee of $15.00 is recieved.

Registration contact: 250-493-7343 or

Aboriginal Sports Recreation and Physical Activity Council Opportunity

Team BC seeking FEMALE Softball Athletes for the
2014 North American Indigenous Games

Registrations are now being accepted for the final Team BC Athlete Identification Camp for softball athletes for the 2014 North American Indigenous Games (NAIG).

Female Softball athletes interested in Team BC and NAIG are requested to attend the following camp:
April 12-13, 2014 from 10 am-3 pm
Sunnyside Park, Surrey, BC (15455 – 26th Ave. off of King George Blvd.)

The 2014 North American Indigenous Games (NAIG) will be held July 20-27, 2014 in Regina, Saskatchewan and Team BC will be there competing in 13 different sports. For the sport of softball, Team BC is seeking to fill vacancies on the following softball team in the female division to compete at 2014 NAIG:
• U16 (born from 1998-2000)

**Registrations will be accepted until 4pm on Wednesday April 9, 2014. NO registrations will be accepted after April 9, 2014. NO walk-up registrations will be accepted. $20/ person. Fee includes a camp t-shirt.

For more information and to register, please contact:
Aboriginal Sport, Recreation & Physical Activity Partners Council
Peshaunquet Shognosh
Assistant Chef de Mission, Team BC- 2014 North American Indigenous Games

Vernon and District Metis Association Women’s Group

We are proud to announce that our ladies group will be starting this week. Sunday April 6th from 12-3 (longer if wanted) and will be held every second Sunday after that at our office building in the board room, #102 3207 30th ave Vernon BC.

VDMA treasurer & women’s rep Wendy Chambers and VDMA Secretary & New horizons elder have many great plans from beading, moose hide campaign, leather work and much much more for this.
The AHIP women’s group funding will be in soon and we have many great gifts and experiences for the women who participate. We are looking for 15 plus women to come and participate every second Sunday with the ladies of the community on building healthy living, Mental health and community togetherness. If you have any questions or would like to participate please come down to the ladies group and find out the great things we have planned for the woman of our community, or call myself @ 250-306-5658

Woman’s Group dates
-April 6th 2014 12pm-3pm
-April 20th 2014 12pm-3p
-May 4th 2014 12pm-3pm
-May 18th 2014 12pm-3pm
-June 1st 2014 12pm-3pm
-June 15th 2014 12pm-3pm
-June 29th 2014 12pm-3pm
-July 13th 2014 12pm-3pm
-July 27th 2014 12pm-3pm
-August 10th 2014 12pm-3pm
-August 24th 2014 12pm-3pm
-October 7th 2014 12pm-3pm
-October 21st 2014 12pm-3pm

We look forward to seeing everyone at the groups.

VDMA Board of Directors