The Medicine of Food: exploring all aspects of wellness at the first Wellness Gathering

The Winds of Change presents the inaugural Wellness Gathering and Recognition Dinner on Thursday, October 21 at the Ull’us Community Complex in Mount Currie from 1:00 to 9:00 p.m.

The event begins with a health and wellness trade show with active living and cooking demonstrations, workshops, kids’ activities and cultural centre tours from 1-5 p.m. The evening, from 5-9 p.m., is kicked off by a dance presentation followed by a free catered dinner and awards ceremony and finishes with a drum circle.

“This is the culmination of a ton of work that goes on behind the scenes every day,” said Winds of Change Steering Committee Chair, Sheldon Tetreault. “It’s our chance to share and celebrate everything good and positive about our communities. It proves what success we can have by working together – Lil’wat, Pemberton, Area C, and N’Quatqua – all of us moving towards a common vision of healthier communities.”

Dr. Heidi Lescanec, a naturopathic doctor and talented cook and teacher, brings her diverse culinary experience and knowledge of food as medicine to the kitchen for her two-part workshop titled Tools for Nourishing Change. Heidi is passionate about good food, nutrition and the art of creating nourishing and beautiful meals. She has cooked at backcountry lodges, retreat centers, the movie industry and at Hollyhock on Cortes, and now brings her “tastefully inspiring” talent to Mount Currie. Her 1:15 p.m. workshop (“Eat, Pray, Love”) looks at how eating well leads to lifelong benefits. At 2:15 p.m. (Naturopathic Self-Care and Whole Foods), she illuminates habit-forming strategies with a hands-on demo and afternoon snack.

Mark Haden, a pivotal voice in the drug policy reform movement, will present “Addictions, Recovery and Healing”, a two hour workshop starting at 2:00 p.m. Haden currently works for Vancouver Coastal Health Addiction Services, and has worked in detox, methadone and outpatient settings in both counselling and supervisory roles for over 20 years. He has published on the issue of drug policy in the Canadian Journal of Public Health, and the International Journal of Drug Policy, was involved in producing the Health Officers Council Paper on the Regulation of illegal drugs in 2005, and is a parent with two children and an active member of the Vancouver outdoor recreation community.

Seven awards will be presented during dinner to individuals and organizations that contribute to our collective goal of a healthy and safe environment for our children and families. The seven awards are divided into four categories: The North Wind – Promoting Healthy Lifestyle Choices; The South Wind – Increasing Awareness; The East Wind – Improving Services; and The West Wind – Community Leadership and Responsibility.

The Winds of Change is a collaborative public policy initiative of the Lil’wat Nation and Village of Pemberton. The objective is to reduce the harmful effects of drugs and alcohol on our communities through awareness, advocacy, and promotion of healthy alternatives.

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