Representatives from Nak’azdli Whut’en recently presented the District of Vanderhoof with a cheque for $50,000. The donation is the largest community donation received thus far towards the Vanderhoof Aquatic Centre. “We are so overjoyed that Nak’azdli has chosen to support this project,” says fundraising chair Zoe Dhillon. “The Centre will help expand recreational opportunities in our region—especially for our youth.” Nak’azdli Youth Council coordinator Desiree Whitely adds, “It will be great for our youth to have a pool so close where they can learn water safety and have fun.”
Nak’azdli Whut’en Council and administration are committed to the health and well-being of its members. Naka’zdli’s comprehensive community plan and the Band’s strategic plan both identify community health as a priority. “Our youth are our future,” shares Nak’azdli Council Member Alec McKinnon. “Nak’azdli’s donation is an investment in that future.”
Nicholette Prince, Nak’azdli’s Chief Operating Officer agrees, “We expect many families will take advantage of the pool being close enough to go to in the evenings and on weekends.” Prince continues, “We also imagine our Elders will benefit from using hot tubs and participating in therapeutic aquatic fitness activities. It will be a welcome and much needed addition to the facilities in the north and we want to support it both in our donation and our commitment to using the pool often.”
Fundraising for the Vanderhoof Aquatic Centre began one and a half years ago. The total project goal is $12 million. Of that, $4 million will be collected from taxes and an additional $7.5 million will be raised by the District of Vanderhoof. The community fundraising goal is $500,000—Nak’azdli’s donation brings the current community total to $450,000.
Construction of the Centre is planned adjacent to the Vanderhoof Arena. This location will take advantage of waste heat produced during the operation of that facility.
Nak’azdli Whut’en is a holistic community that believes in maintaining and enhancing traditional values by learning, living and teaching our culture and heritage. Nak’azdli is vibrant and self-determined–a community made up of diverse individuals and businesses working together to promote education, health and economic progress.