Northland Awards SCI as Friends of Education
In the late hours of Wednesday and the wee hours of Thursday morning, September 24, three representatives of SCI made our way from Janvier, Fort Chipewyan and Calgary to Peace River for a very special event: the Alberta School Boards Association (ASBA) Zone 1 Friends of Education & Edwin Parr Awards Banquet.
Delores Cardinal represented Sekweha and ELI work with Father Perin school in Janvier. Tina Fraser represented LAYC and ELI with ADCS in Fort Chipewyan. Chantale Campbell represented the collective of all partners supporting community efforts. “The three of us humbly represented the program staff, community boards, community volunteers, teachers, administrators, support staff, working group members and steering committee members that makes each part of SCI what it is today: a vibrant and flourishing set of community and youth-led programs that is making a difference in lives,” Chantale reflected.
Met by Donna Barrett, Superintendent of Northland School Division, the ladies were escorted to our table at the front of the banquet hall. The air in the hall was filled with the buzz of excited teachers, administrators and guests catching up on the time since they last saw each other. For our group, we reflected on the great time at the recent ELI Gathering and what was ahead for SCI this fall. Some last minute to and fro confirmed that Chantale would speak a few words upon receiving the award, Delores would come up for moral support and Tina was happy to be our in-house photographer.
Lunch was buffet-style with chicken curry and roast beef as the main event and as we collected our desserts, the ceremony began.
A few words by the master of ceremonies to welcome us and then straight into the awards. Each division of the ASBA Zone 1 had an award recipient. Nine in total, SCI was 6th on the list and represented Northland’s choice. Donna provided a great introduction and invite us up for the award,
“SCI has demonstrated the belief that education is an essential ingredient to creating a healthy community,” said Donna Barrett.
“They work with schools to provide authentic learning experiences so students can know and be proud of their community as well as being prepared to contribute to the larger society.” Chantale delivered a thank you and Delores improvised some words to end the speech on behalf of SCI. Tina was taking video and pictures. With flights leaving Grande Prairie in a few hours, hurried thank you’s and hugs all around were shared and then off we went, hitting the highway in the same manner we had arrived.
Peace River, it was a slice.
“There is rarely a more honourable challenge than to work for today’s vulnerable child and see them become tomorrow’s inspiring leader. Gratitude because the award is a humbling honour, and there are so many hands who have touched the relationship with Northlands to form what it is today and promises for tomorrow. The award also comes at a time of need for SCI to showcase our work and attract long-term, sustainable support,” said Chantale.
The Friend of Education Award is received by all of SCI with such pride and gratitude. Pride because it recognizes the work towards a vision of supporting youth as they choose their life path with confidence, and of walking in two worlds in finding that path.
The framed certificate is currently sitting in Chantale’s office in Calgary, but much like the Stanley Cup, will be making its way on tour to other desks and tables in other communities…. Friends of Education Award… that has a catchy ring.