Northern Shuswap First Nations Collaborate to Perserve and Exhibit Culture

Northern Secwepemc Cultural Society

2012- The directors of the 100 Mile House and District Historical Society invited the five Northern Shuswap First Nations IN 2003 to consider joint participation with the Society in an effort to incorporate First Nations history and culture into its eight-acre historical site at the 108 Mile Lake in the South Cariboo. In February 2004, it was decided that a working group should be formed to pursue the objective of constructing a museum/cultural centre, gift shop and theatre on a two-acre parcel at the 108 historical site.

In July 2006, the working group members were incorporated as the Northern Secwepemc Cultural Society (NSCS) representing the five Northern Shuswap First Nations communities from Esk'etmc (Alkali Lake), Tsq'escen' (Canim Lake), Stswecem'c/Xgat'tem (Canoe Creek/Dog Creek), Xats'ull/Cmetem' (Soda Creek) and T'exelcemc (Williams Lake).

In May 2007, stage one of a feasibility study was conducted by the Vancouver architectural firm of Busby Perkins & Will, and the conclusion was that all the prerequisites to a full feasibility study had been met. The North Secwepemc Cultural Society then secured funding under this project for the development of the full-scale feasibility study that was completed at the end of December 2008.

"This museum will serve the purpose of preserving, recording and exhibiting such materials for the education and enjoyment of the general public and for the general benefit of the members of the participating First Nations."

Northern Secwepemc Cultural Society

Positive Economic Impacts in 108 Mile Ranch

The feasibility study for the museum and cultural centre to be operated by the Northern Shuswap First Nations has provided the blueprint for increased economic activity in 108 Mile as well as multi-community collaboration in the region. Local band members were employed in an archaeological impact assessment that assessed the appropriateness of the two acre plot that has been selected for the proposed building site.

The study has paved the way for over $1.6 million to be invested in the construction of a museum and cultural centre that is 300 metres square. When the planned centre is constructed, it will provide a great cultural attraction for the historic 108 Mile Ranch area.

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