Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Youth Heritage NL at Government House

Guest blog post by Heather Elliott and Lisa Daly

Last Thursday, we had the pleasure of representing Youth Heritage NL at a Volunteer Week reception hosted by the Lieutenant Governor, the Honourable Frank Fagan and Her Honour Patricia Fagan.

We’ll both admit that we were a little intimidated by the event. Heather had never been in Government House, and Lisa had been in there once on a Sunday morning when former Lieutenant Governor, Edward Roberts, stole her tour group and gave them a quick tour. That intimidation melted away as we were announced and warmly greeted by our hosts.

Lisa (left) and Heather (right) at the Volunteer Week Reception.

We spent the reception exploring the grand rooms, and asked a volunteer from Ronald McDonald House to take our picture. Turns out, we had our picture taken in one of very room where the Women’s Patriotic Association (WPA) used to hold their meetings during the First World War. They would knit socks, mitts, scarves and other items, as well as put together care packages to be shipped over to the soldiers abroad. It really was incredible to be standing where all those women had worked one hundred years ago!

Photo from The Rooms Provincial Archives, A 51-108

The reception was a wonderful way to show appreciation for volunteers, and while not everyone involved with Youth Heritage NL had the opportunity attended, the other attendees we spoke to were excited by the idea of a youth heritage group and all expect to see us accomplish great things in the near future. So know that while we are a fledgling group (and possibly currently bogged down by exams and hunting for seasonal jobs), the volunteer organizations of Newfoundland and Labrador are looking forward to working with us!

As a final note, cucumber, hollowed out and stuffed with hummus and topped with a piece of shredded carrot is really good!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Youth Heritage Forum 2015 - A Review

If you plan it, they will come... and so they did! Sixty enthusiastic youth participants joined us on March 7th, 2015 for the first ever Youth Heritage Forum, a fun and exciting day was had by all! Our mission was to give young people engaged in heritage a voice and our participants took that opportunity and ran with it. This is the first time youth from across the province have been provided the opportunity to come together and discuss their role in the heritage sector and they were not about to let that opportunity pass them by. Throughout the day participants discussed why young people are integral to the future of heritage what heritage organizations should do to become youth inclusive.

Participants were treated to an amazing drum and dance ceremony from First Nations Eastern Owl Women's Drum Group to get the day started on an inspiring and energetic note! We then had the pleasure of hearing from our guest panel consisting of six talented and inspiring young women who spoke about their work in the heritage sector, and then took questions from the crowd. You can read about about our guest panelists and listen to their discussion here!

The second part of the day consisted of a breakout session where our participants had the opportunity to get to know each other and discuss the questions at hand when it comes to youth involvement in heritage. One topic we focused on was recommendations for heritage organizations in becoming youth inclusive, it was an engaging conversation and some great ideas were brought to the table.
6 Ways to Make Your Heritage Organization Youth Inclusive:
  • Create Meaningful Opportunities for Youth
  • Focus on Funding for Youth Employment
  • Use 'Youth Friendly' Channels of Communication
  • Be Accessible
  • Be Open to New Ideas and Practices
  • Be Social
To download the full Youth Heritage Forum report, including a full list of recommendations click here!

As the forum wrapped up our participants were still full of energy and curious as to what the group could do next. They decided the first step was to create an outlet to stay connected, share advice, and discuss future opportunities. Interested youth can now join Youth Heritage Newfoundland and Labrador on Facebook to connect with like minded youth from across the province.

And just like that my time as Youth Heritage Forum Coordinator has come and gone! It was a pleasure to be part of the Heritage Foundation of NL team and I had a fantastic time putting together the forum, and an even better time meeting all of the participants! As a young person working in the heritage sector myself, I am incredibly inspired by the enthusiasm and dedication of my peers. I can wait to see what's next for Youth Heritage Newfoundland and Labrador!

Friday, March 27, 2015

ICH Update for Feb/March 2015: Youth, Games, and Play.

In this month's edition of the Intangible Cultural Heritage Update for Newfoundland and Labrador: Dale Jarvis gives a brief overview of the activities the ICH office has been up to in February and March; Alanna Wicks summarizes the Youth Heritage Forum held March 7th; and Sharon King-Campbell gives the details on the "Looking Back: Games We Played" booklet, and interviews Paula Roberts about her childhood memories of Clarenville.

Download the newsletter in pdf
Other versions here

Photo: Paula Roberts and her brother Robert, 1977.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Looking Back; Games We Played - now online!

Terra Barrett looks on as Teresa Boland reads her original
poem, featured in Looking Back; Games We Played
Well, the sails have been hoisted: Looking Back; Games We Played has been launched - and what a launch it was!

About 35 people gathered at MacMorran Community Centre on Tuesday morning to hear speeches from Dr. Cory Thorne and Dr. Jillian Gould (MUN Department of Folklore) and student Jacquey Ryan, and a reading by participant Teresa Boland. Cake was cut, a game of hopscotch was played, and the booklets were passed around, signed, and admired.

If you weren't able to come out on Tuesday to pick up a hard copy of the booklet, never fear! Your local NL Public Library will be receiving a copy or two in short order, or click here to see the whole thing online.

Looking Back; Games We Played is the product of the Hoist your Sails and Run project, pairing senior tradition bearers with student folklorists to talk about games and pastimes.

This project has been funded by the Government of Canada's New Horizons for Seniors Program.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Come play! 16th annual Sharing Our Cultures event this Sunday

You are invited to Sharing Our Cultures, a fun-filled family event, at The Rooms, Sunday March 22, at 2-4 pm. Learn to play Shadow Puppets from China, Ludo from India, La Rana from Colombia, and many other games from around the world. Interact with school youth from diverse cultural backgrounds residing in St. John's and learn about their cultures. Admission to Sharing Our Cultures is FREE (fees apply for The Rooms exhibits). Contact Dr. Lloydetta Quaicoe at lloydetta@sharingourcultures.com or www.sharingourcultures.com.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Rescuing a stranded sailor, or breaking a neighbour's window: World Storytelling Day #WorldStory15

World Storytelling Day. Logo by Mats Rehnman.

At ICH, we're in the business of stories.

When it comes right down to it, stories are what many of us value the most. When we walk into a centuries-old home, we think "If these walls could talk, what stories would they tell?" Our most cherished moments are remembered as stories.

The best thing about stories is that they multiply in value when shared. It's fun to tell a story, and fun to hear one. Storytelling has been around since humans came up with language.

Today is World Storytelling Day, an global celebration of the art of oral storytelling, recognized every year on the spring equinox in the northern hemisphere. You can read more about it here.

In honour of this day, I want to share my very first oral history interview ever, and the first interview in the Hoist your Sails and Run project (available on the DAI here). I spoke with Winston Fiander, from Portugal Cove-St. Philips, over Skype, and amid descriptions of games he used to play, he told me a couple of particularly notable stories.

To hear how his father rescued a stranded fisherman, go to 15:28.

To hear how he got up to mischief with a homemade slingshot and got away with it, go to 28:10.

And don't forget to check out Looking Back; Games We Played - the published result of the Hoist your Sails and Run project - set to launch Tuesday, March 24th.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

"A rising tide lifts all boats" - Living with heritage in Bonavista

Notice - Annual General Meeting – Newfoundland and Labrador Historic Trust

Thursday March 19, 2015, 7 - 9pm
The Plantation, Quidi Vidi Village, St. John's, NL

Parking is limited so carpooling is recommended. New members welcome
Light refreshments will be served

Following the meeting there will be a special presentation by John Norman:


John Norman grew up in the historic community of Bonavista. During his university years, Norman purchased various pieces of vacant land and historic properties throughout Bonavista, which he believed were worth preserving. In 2014, blending formal education and professional work with a passion for built heritage, Norman (with Mark and Chantal Dickson) founded a new group of companies: Bonavista Living; Bonavista Creative; and Bonavista Creative Workshop.

The companies’ core principles are to restore and preserve the existing built heritage of Bonavista, systematically protecting and capitalizing upon its heritage resources, while creating a more livable community for all. They intend to restore numerous residential heritage properties, while fostering and promoting new and unique businesses that will contribute to the local economy, thereby enhancing the community.

Mr. Norman’s presentation will discuss the various ways in which his group of companies is making an impact in the region.

Looking Back; Games We Played: new booklet to launch March 24

Memorial University’s Folklore department has teamed up with the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador to launch Looking Back; Games We Played, a booklet exploring the childhood games of Newfoundland’s past.

Folklore graduate students spent the month of February with seniors at the MacMorran Community Centre to discuss the games they played as children, and to partake in a few of those games together. During the weekly gatherings at the community centre, the games remembered ranged from the classic Hide and Go Seek, to Cat’s Cradle, to sliding on pieces of wooden barrels or car bonnets in the winter months.

Looking Back; Games We Played documents the interviews and memories of childhood play that the students collected. The booklet will launch at the MacMorran Community Centre at 10am on March 24th, 2015. Refreshments will be available and there will be games to be played!

This project has been funded by the Government of Canada's New Horizons for Seniors Program.
For more information, please contact:
Andrea McGuire
(709) 771-2216

Monday, March 16, 2015

Reframing and Extending Tradition: Intangible Cultural Heritage and Public Folklore in Newfoundland and Labrador

Last year, I was asked to write an article on the role of brokers and mediators in enacting Newfoundland and Labrador's Intangible Cultural Heritage Strategy. That article was included in a special edition of the folklore journal Volkskunde, which has now been released online.

My article outlines three approaches where ICH safeguarding strategies in Newfoundland and Labrador utilize guided facilitation by professional folklorists: community-based training initiatives; safeguarding ICH within heritage districts; and, the development of public programs as part of folklife festivals.

You can download and view the article in pdf format here.

Or you can download the entire journal here.