Squamish Nation raises funds for native plant garden

Fundraiser set for July 21

A Squamish Nation project to plant a garden aims to get at the root of deep-'seeded' issues. While it may not initially sound like a groundbreaking idea, this garden will reintroduce Indigenous plants that were once wiped out by invasive species — just one of the effects of colonialism.

"Reclaiming space for native plants can be a gateway to reclaiming traditional place names, practices and traditions," an event descriptor for the project's fundraiser says.

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The garden will be used as a metaphor and tool to teach the youth about the effects of colonialism, while spending time outside, Cat Madden said in an email to The Chief.

Madden, who is one of the organizers of the July 21 fundraiser, said Squamish Nation members will also speak about the impacts of residential schools through the generations. Her recently released song Thank God, which focuses on intergenerational trauma, will be played, then an hour will be dedicated to anyone who wants to speak of their experience with mental illness.

"I am excited as this will be an opportunity for Nation and non-Nation members to come together and learn each others' histories and it's all going towards a great cause," Madden said.

The project's goal is to raise $1,500 for the garden project. There will be prizes and raffle for Squamish Constellation Festival tickets at the fundraiser at _space (1416 Winnipeg Street) on July 21. Entrance is by donation, starting at 6 p.m.

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