WATCH: The I Love First Peoples shoebox campaign has been embraced by Canadians, who are filling shoeboxes with educational gifts for First Nation children in Northern communities.
Now, Dallas Arcand Junior is performing for a number of Victoria school students to thank them for their efforts.
Arcand, from Alexander First Nation in Alberta, is a motivational speaker, and a Hoop Dancer.
“The kids get really captivated after the performance,” says Arcand “and so it sort of boosts up native people, if that makes sense.”
“In the spring of this year,” says Lynn Cole, “we traveled up to the Gitxsan territory, and had a most amazing experience. We had 1700 beautiful friendship boxes that we delivered, that were gathered across British Columbia.”
Cole heads up the Victoria chapter of the I Love First Peoples shoebox campaign.
“Really, we’re bringing friendship and encouragement to these young children,” says Cole.
Cole’s daughter Lillian remembers last year’s campaign well. Cole’s Victoria chapter filled 900 boxes!
“We filled up the whole garage,” says Lillian with a smile, “and then my dad was kinda like, ‘Noooo! My garage is like a big mess with big boxes in the middle of it!’.”
In the spring, Cole was part of the group delivering the I Love First Peoples gifts.
“We had a wonderful opportunity during our days of celebration in the Gitxsan, to travel with Dallas Arcand Junior” says Cole. “So, I was thinking, for this campaign, [what a] beautiful opportunity to bring Dallas Arcand Junior to our communities here.”
“This is very special for me, here, because I’m able to essentially share a lot more with all the kids,” says Arcand.
Shoe boxes filled with items that support education, such as books, art supplies, musical instruments, and a note of encouragement, can be dropped at any Frontrunners location in Victoria.
Learn more about the I Love First Peoples campaign here.