Construction Begins On The Healing Garden

May 10, 2017

Official pipe ceremony and sod-turning event held

Construction of the community-led Healing Garden project has officially begun. A spiritual pipe ceremony took place on Wednesday, May 10, 2017 to prepare the site for construction. Located on the north side of the Sturgeon River, across from St. Albert Place, the garden will be a place of truth and reconciliation, a visible sign of the community’s commitment to walk in right relations with First Nation, Métis and Inuit peoples and with all Nations.

The ceremony consisted of an Elder-led pipe ceremony for guests and dignitaries, drumming, speeches, sod-turning, a special presentation from students representing Muriel Martin Elementary School, and a round dance to conclude the event.

“I am hopeful the Healing Garden will help bring awareness, education and cultural teachings to the community,” says Mayor Nolan Crouse. “It is one of the many ways we can answer the calls to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.”

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) asks all orders of government to get involved in the healing and reconciliation process for Indian Residential School survivors and their families.

The Healing Garden’s planning committee consists of residential school survivors, First Nations and Métis community representatives, the United Church, St. Albert community members and the City of St. Albert.

Funding support for the Healing Garden was provided by Western Economic Diversification Canada through the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program, The Anglican Foundation Healing Fund, as well as donations from the St. Albert United Church, Muriel Martin Elementary School and individual community members.

The City of St. Albert initiated the Healing Garden project in 2015 with construction scheduled to be completed in August, 2017.

For more information, visit the Healing Garden webpage.

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