Staff and students stand with a log which is anticipated to be the school's future totem pole.

Totem pole log arrives at Mount Elizabeth high school

A pole expected to be carved into a totem pole arrived this morning at Mount Elizabeth Middle Secondary School.

It has arrived, the 28 foot log which is set to be carved into Mount Elizabeth Middle Secondary School’s totem pole.

Skeena Sawmills donated the log and arranged for its delivery to the school on November 25, where it was placed outside before it was eventually covered.

It’s the latest development in a plan the school put into action in late 2012.

“It’s been a long time dream, to have something in the building that represents unity of our community and incorporates the awareness of the First Nations culture in our school community,” said Katherine Johnsen,  a counsellor at the high school, last December.

With a number of corporate and government donations, the program is on track, but a timeline for when the rest of the process will take place is not yet known.

The next steps are, however, to get someone to officially bless the log, and to get approval by their carver for the log.

“We’ve got to find someone in our community to come over and bless the pole before we can do anything to it,” said First Nations support worker Sheila Duncan.

“We have to set up a place for the pole to be where the carver can work, where the kids can access it,” said Katherine Johnsen, a counsellor at the high school, and a key member of the committee which is arranging this totem pole project.

The pole, expected to be 10 feet once complete, is anticipated to be placed in the lobby of the school near the main office.

The plan will be to have the students at the school participate in some way with the carving as well, both in learning the process of carving and the history of totem poles as well.

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