By Julia Magsombol 

Local Journalism Initiative 

[email protected]

Little Badgers Early Learning presents Nana Playgroup, an outdoor play and exploration for the little ones.  

The playgroup started May 12 and ends on June 23. It’s a nature-based exploration for children ages 0-5. 

The children and caregivers experience fun activities such as telling stories, learning Ktunaxa words and counting, and talking about nature and animals. 

“It was a good introduction to the Playgroup and a nice way for families to connect,” said Carrie Rickards, the general manager of Eva Joseph Learning and Cultural Society that runs Little Badgers.

 Rickards said they partnered with Aboriginal Earlier Services and First Nations Health Authority to establish the Playgroup this year. It started in 2017 but COVID-19 put it on hold for the last three years. 

“We felt it was time to start it again, in some depth. It’s another opportunity for families to get together and for children to play and interact with one another,” said Rickards. 

“If there’s a good need for it, then we will see if we continue it in the fall,” she added. 

Rickards can’t deny that the program’s opening after three years was a success. She said many families joined them last May when they played in the garden. She described it as an “excellent” introduction.

“We’re hoping for more families to come as we progress,” Rickards said. “I am excited about it. This is lifelong relationships and connections . . . it’s inclusiveness. It’s open for everybody.”

The free program is offered every Friday from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. and is located at the Little Badgers Learning Centre in Windermere. 

In related news, Little Badgers received a ChildCareBC Award of Excellence for inclusive practices.

“We are pretty honoured,” said Rickards. 

Little Badgers Early Learning Program is also nature-focused, meaning they teach different Indigenous environmental topics to children.

“This award seems like a good pat on the back — that we’re doing the right thing,” Rickards said. “I hope that we continue to be all-inclusive, to be able to continue to support the needs of everyone, including diverse needs of different ethnic groups.” 

For more information about Little Badgers, visit: