Tolko Industries participates in Indigenous ceremonies

On Sept. 26, Tolko Industries raised three flags at its High Prairie mill eight km west of town, including Every Child Matters flag in recognition of National Day for Truth and Reconciliation (Orange Shirt Day) Sept. 30. Left-right are plant manager Troy Richardson, maintenance Supt. Justin Sheen, mechanical team lead Darrel Drynan, electrical team lead Brandon Francks, mechanical back up team lead Brandon Fandrey and mechanical team lead Shawn Bowering. Tolko is doing its part to bridge the gap in Truth and Reconciliation matters. With the help of Kapawe’no First Nation, Tolko participated in several events during September. Two teepees were erected Sept. 1 by Jarrett Knibb and Herman Sutherland Jr. from Kapawe’no First Nation, assisted by Tristen Auger, Grant Halverson, Peter Spruyt, Henry Peterson and Victor Gagnon from Tolko. Inside there are posters hung that include photos and information on the residential school history at Grouard, the final summary of the ground-penetrating radar search at Grouard Mission, and paintings done by local artist Leana Richardson. Four crew lunches also took place in September. The lunches were prepared by a local, Indigenous cook, an Elder prayed for Tolko before every meal, and shared stories and advice. Tolko invited an Indigenous artist to sell her products at the lunches. On Sept. 30, Tolko planned to send six employees to the Kiaros blanket exercise hosted by the High Prairie Native Friendship Centre at the High Prairie CRC office and help serve lunch. After, they participated in Every Child Matters Walk to the High Prairie and District Museum for the grand opening of the Peyak Mikwan Gallery. Tolko also distributed T-shirts recognizing National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. To show their appreciation for the co-operative provided in its initiatives, Tolko provided undisclosed donations to Kapawe’no First Nation and the High Prairie Native Friendship Centre.

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