"Humour is a very important part of our culture," said Adrian LaChance, who emceed C&W's first Community Round Dance this past week.
Adrian, who is a renowned Cree powwow dancer, singer and drummer, led the celebration with jokes and kept the crowd laughing through the dances.
Watch the Recorded Live Stream of the Round Dance
Treaty 6 Territory, where Lachance is from, is in the central west portions, colonially known as Alberta and Saskatchewan. He says the round dance came to Elders in a dream, when healing was needed in the communities.
"As Cree people, we always hold hands and dance in a circle clockwise. That's the way we believe the earth travels around the sun. We're trying to show you an example of healing, of how it has helped many, many people in Treaty 6 Territory begin their journey of healing."
"These songs and dances have been important tools for learning and healing and it's a part of the Indigenous ways of knowing and healing," says project manager Jackie Norman.
Knowledge Keeper, Sulksun, Shane Pointe, who recently gifted PHSA six Coast Salish teachings, opened the event, thanking PHSA and C&W staff for attending, to further develop awareness and understanding of Indigenous Peoples and culture. He reminded the crowd of the rich history of the land the event is being held on.
"My sister Thelma and I, and niece, come from Musqueam. It's important for all of you to know and understand just how long we have been here. Our families at Musqueam – 4,000 years, that's how old Musqueam Village is."
The event was organize d by C&W Indigenous Health. "The vision for the Round Dance was guided by Creator and the ancestors to build collaboration, relationship and community at Children's and Women's," says Jackie Norman, project manager.
Director Sherri Di Lallo says, "One of the most important pieces of learning cultural practices and being culturally safe is through experiential engagement and that's one reason why we're having this event today."
This event was kindly supported by the BC Women's Health Foundation.
“Our sponsorship of the inaugural community round dance at BC Children’s Hospital and Women’s Hospital + Health Centre, was a direct reflection of our conscious desire to support the C&W Indigenous Health team and their efforts. Reconciliation is something that we have been reflecting upon at the Foundation and we hope to do more in the future," says Cally Wesson, president and CEO of BC Women’s Health Foundation.