June 2021 quarterly WFN business e-newsletter. 
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A Message from y̓il̓mixʷm (Chief) Derickson, Dark History or Present Reality


Photo: Cenotaph at Kamloops Indian Residential School

June 2, 2021 - Since the news broke about the discovery of the remains of 215 Indigenous children at the Kamloops Residential School, I have been bombarded by texts and phone calls. Friends, colleagues, and political leaders have been asking, “How are you, and your community doing?” “How can we support you?”.

How am I? I’m angry, indignant, and perplexed as to why a country like ours; a modern day free, liberal, and democratic society tolerates the ongoing atrocious treatment of Indigenous peoples. I’m also surprised that this news came as a shock.

How is my community doing? We are heavy with grief, anger, rage, resentment, and indignation. We are trying to find a way to reconcile our existence as syilx people within a country that continues to ignore us. We are trying to find a way to heal, but the tether of historic unaddressed atrocities continues to haunt us. Continue reading....

x̌ast iʔ sck̓ʷúl̓səlx / Congratulations
 to all 2021 graduates!

West Kelowna city hall/library construction begins following a groundbreaking ceremony on June 15.

City staff said that building the public skatepark adjacent to where the future city hall and library will be is the first step to starting the project.

West Kelowna city council, together with the Okanagan Regional Library and Westbank First Nation broke the ground at the new skatepark. Read the full story at Kelowna Capital News.

The city is inviting residents to get involved in the preliminary design consultation for the city hall/library building. To provide feedback, visit the city’s website.

Spirit of Syilx Unity Run

From June 2-5 Syilx Nation members from across the territory ran out on the land as part of the Spirit of Syilx Unity Run. On Saturday, June 5, 2021, a special component of the run included an in-person event that went from nkm̓ apəlqs (Head of the Lake) to the Kamloops Indian Residential School (KIRS) on Tk'emlups te Secwepemc territory, in just one day, and was a recognition for all the children that never returned from the Kamloops Indian Residential School. Read more

Check out WFN's newest Retail Directory here!

If you're a business owner on WFN Lands and don't see your business listed or there's an error with your listed, please email

In honour of Residential School survivors and the children that did not make it home, the WFN Youth program raised this tipi, surrounded with orange flowers and filled with orange lights.

WFN Council Celebrates Opening of 17 New Housing Units for Members

WFN Chief & Council, along with two of the new apartment tenants and representatives from Faction Projects (project architects), cut a ribbon today in celebration of the opening of 17 new affordable housing units for WFN Members.

The two-storey apartment complex pictured above is located on Falcon Lane, with a mix of 14 one- and two-bedroom units. Three townhomes were also constructed, located one street over on Fox Road, each with two bedrooms, living, dining and kitchen areas, and one-and-a-half bathrooms. 

Both projects were funded through BC Housing’s Indigenous Housing Fund, which sees the province invest in housing for Indigenous communities. The fund is a $550-million investment over 10 years to build and operate 1,750 new homes, both on and off-reserve across the province.

“Our community is extremely grateful for the relationship we are developing with BC Housing,” said Chief Christopher Derickson. “It is encouraging to see that BC Housing is now investing in housing on First Nation reserve lands for First Nation’s people. These 17 new homes will provide additional affordable housing options for our Members in the midst of what is becoming an increasingly unaffordable housing market here in our region. Through the Indigenous Housing Fund and our relationship with BC Housing, we are making a difference in the lives of our Members.”

WFN provided the land for both projects and will own and operate the buildings

WFN Offices will be closed Thursday, July 1 for Canada Day

WFN Chief & Council, Members and community took part in Caravan in Unity to Kamloops, June 26

Photo Credit Aaron Hemens/Capital News; 
WFN Councillor Jordan Coble drumming near Hwy 97. 

The purpose of the Caravan in Unity event was to honour the 215 children whose remains were found at the former Kamloops Indian Residential School in May, and for the recent discovery of 751 unmarked graves at a cemetery near the former Marieval Indian Residential School in Saskatchewan.

“That’s why we’re here today; to remember them, to honour them, but then to remember the generations that are coming ahead of us,” said Chief Christopher Derickson. Read the full story at Kelowna Capital News

Campfire Ban across Central Okanagan

Effective 12 p.m. today, June 30, all campfires are prohibited throughout all Central Okanagan municipalities and electoral area Fire Service Areas.

Due to extreme temperatures, dry conditions and the high-extreme fire danger rating, the campfire ban will remain in effect until further notice. Read more.

West Kelowna FireSmart Grant Program

The City of West Kelowna and Westbank First Nation, in partnership with the Community Resiliency Investment (CRI) Program, is offering funding to help property owners who demonstrate the use of FireSmart principles and initiatives to reduce the risk of wildfire damage to their homes and community.

Submission deadline is October 31, 2021. 
For more info or to apply

Schedule changes make their way to the Kelowna Regional Transit System

Starting Sunday, July 4, transit users in the Kelowna region will see schedule adjustments on most routes throughout the transit system. Please check the BC Transit website for specific route details.
Additionally, please be advised that the Bellevue Creek Bridge detour remain for routes 16 Kettle Valley and 17 South Ridge.
More info

Regional Nuisance Mosquito Control Program

RDCO administers this ongoing program to provide effective management of the insects through control of mosquito larvae in an environmentally friendly manner and to reduce the potential risk of West Nile Virus.

Click HERE for more information and to learn what actions you can take to reduce nuisance mosquitos and the risk of West Nile Virus.

Employment Opportunities

  • Human Resources Manager
  • Staffing Consultant
  • Indigenous Supported Child Development Worker
  • Summer Student positions
For full list of current opening or to apply, click here.

WFN Directory

Main Reception
250 769 4999

Employment Coordinator
250 768 8281

Health & Wellness
250 768 0227

Youth & Education
250 768 4838

250 768 7337

250 707 3332

Public Works
250 707 0493

Law Enforcement
250 717 6147

778 755 2787
Full Directory
WFN Economic Development Commission (EDC)

Kelsey McLeod, Chairperson
Angie Derrickson, Vice Chair
Jennifer Money
Lisa Pastro
Brianna Wilson
Domenic Rampone
Steven Money

View Commissioner profiles >

WFN EDC Mission: Assist & facilitate Chief & Council, and the WFN business community, to create a healthy, environmentally sustainable & dynamic economy based on values of self-reliance. 
Copyright © 2020, Westbank First Nation, all rights reserved.

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301 - 515 Hwy 97S, Kelowna, BC V1Z 3J2

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Westbank First Nation · 515 Highway 97 South · Kelowna, BC V1Z 3J2 · Canada

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