By Julia Magsombol 

Local Journalism Initiative 

[email protected]

The BC Achievement Foundation has announced the 2024 Call for Nominations for the BC Reconciliation Award.    

The award recognizes individuals, groups and organizations that have demonstrated exceptional leadership, respect, and commitment to furthering truth and reconciliation in British Columbia. The nomination period is open until January 31, 2024.

“Every year we launch nominations for the BC Reconciliation Award. I grow increasingly grateful for the opportunity to witness the exceptional ways in which individuals and organizations in British Columbia advance reconciliation,” said Janet Austin, the Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia. “It takes creativity, intelligence, but most importantly, it takes courage to acknowledge the injustices of the past and present and courage to mend those wounds. I look forward to seeing this courage reflected in the 2024 nominations.”

Austin has made reconciliation one of the key themes of her mandate.

The award was inspired from the work of Steven Point, the 28th Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, who is also a founder of the award program. His hand-carved red cedar canoe, Shxwtitostel, is currently on display at the BC Legislature buildings.

It was created to symbolize reconciliation, with the understanding that “we are all in the same canoe” and must “paddle together” to move forward.

The BC Achievement Foundation has several established programs celebrating Indigenous business and First Nations art. 

“The ability to use recognition to further reconciliation stems from the foundation’s goals to adhere to the principles of truth and reconciliation,” said the BC Achievement Foundation.

This award inspired the BC Achievement Foundation because recognition builds connected communities. The foundation shared that recognition generates interest and curiosity about reconciliation and provides real-life examples how many of us can further our journey there.

“I hope this recognition continues to inspire positive change and strengthens the bonds of reconciliation in our province,” said Chief/Kukpi7 Rosanne Casimir, former recipient and 2023 selection committee member. “As a juror and past recipient of the BC Reconciliation Award, I am humbled and honoured to witness and be a part of the transformative power of reconciliation efforts in British Columbia and encourage you to nominate those who are making a difference; change is transformative and we all must do our part,” she said. 

The BC Achievement Foundation sees the nomination and recognition process as a collaboration and the beginning of a strong, meaningful relationship with Indigenous people.

“Reconciliation serves as the foundation for forging meaningful connections and closing the gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities. 

Through acknowledging historical injustices and highlighting transformative initiatives, we inspire others to follow a similar path,” said Cloy-e-iis, Judith Sayers, board member of the BC Achievement Foundation.

Visit the BC Achievement Foundation website at award-2023.