Members of Ɂakisq’nuk First Nation in Windermere are making a community dream for a recreation centre come to life, and Columbia Basin Trust is providing $500,000 to support their efforts.

“This project is an absolute priority for this community, and its opening and utilization will be a source of such pride and hopefulness that it almost defies description.”

“This multi-use building has significant community support and is the result of a considerable amount of community input and visioning,” said Johnny Strilaeff, Columbia Basin Trust President and Chief Executive Officer.

“We’re pleased to be able to help Ɂakisq’nuk realize its community’s goals while benefitting the local economy, providing more opportunities for physical activity and promoting a deeper sense of community.”

This $4-million project is the largest this community has ever undertaken and will provide jobs and training for community members during design and construction, with further opportunities once programs are running. The 22,400-square foot sports complex will house a gymnasium, elevated walking and running track, exercise room, locker rooms, team rooms and a kitchen and seating area. It will also include office space for the Ɂakisq’nuk administration. It will be available for use by anyone in the Columbia Valley, with activity options for all ages and a range of interests.

“This project is an absolute priority for this community, and its opening and utilization will be a source of such pride and hopefulness that it almost defies description,” said Heather Rennebohm, Economic Development Officer, Ɂakisq’nuk First Nation.

Chief Alfred Joseph sees this Centre, which will be open to all residents and visitors, as a manifestation of the First Nation view, he added, “This community is not separate, we are all part of the larger whole.”

Construction should be complete and facilities in use by September 2018.