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“A Day of Friendship focuses on community relations”: Lloydminster Friendship Centre

The Lloydminster Friendship Centre celebrates the importance of relations within the community with a Day of Friendship. The Alberta Native Friendship Centres Association along with its 21 centres province-wide joined together on June 7th to showcase unity by bringing together all community members to join in on activities throughout the day.

Each friendship centre celebrated in their own ways with open houses, community walks and entertainment. The Lloydminster location kicked off the morning with a free pancake breakfast and entertainment.

“It’s a place where people can gather and socialize,” Executive Director Bonnie Start says a Day of Friendship serves as a way of showing the community that everyone is welcomed to the centre. “I think it’s just a way of building relationships in the community.”

Grade 4 students from Winston Churchill School create Indigenious crafts during Day of Friendship. (106.1 The Goat/ Tre Lopushinsky.)

Later on in the day a Grade 7 class from E.S Laird and a grade 4 class from Winston Churchill school visited the centre to take part in traditional Indigenous hand games and crafts.

“I think it’s critical to our organization and to the community to know that we’re here, that we help everyone. We have programs and services for all ages,” Start believes opening the doors for residents to learn more about Indigenous culture betters the community as a whole. ”

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I think it builds appreciation and respect for Indigenous people, for our culture and our traditions, it builds understanding.”

A Day of Friendship has evolved from the previous “Walk for Friendship” 9 years ago by the ANFCA. With the abundance of community walks, Start says the friendship association gave friendship centres in the province the reins to plan their own activities throughout the day.

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