Designated Sacred Spaces Program

Contact person (The person making this entry has the ability to edit this entry in the future. See above for details as to how): 
Glenn Hymers
Email address of primary contact person: 
glennandbrenda@sasktel.net
Describe the project (This description appears in your map point. Insert a photo if you choose by selecting the "tree" icon): 

The “Designated Sacred Space Project” is a joint effort of the Craik Sustainable Living Project and Multi-Faith Saskatchewan.

1) objective – To quote from the “Designated Sacred Space Project” pamphlet, “To achieve sustainability for present and future generations, we need to be mindful of how we take care of our Mother Earth...The project provides a location where visitors...could relax, reflect, pray and meditate in the peaceful and natural environment of the Arm River Valley near Craik, Saskatchewan.”

2) beneficiaries –

a. the site provides level access affording a high degree of visitibility for mobility challenged, elderly and other special needs visitors

b. the project represents an outlet for the human need to reconnect with nature

c. the site provides an alternative to those who for various reasons are disconnected with organized religion or have limited access to church buildings and/or communities

3) what makes it unique –

a. the first and currently the only project of its kind in Saskatchewan

b. promotes the common environmental vision of various faith-based groups

c. represents a maturing of the CSLP in terms of extending into the realm of “social sustainability”

d. enhances the nearby xeric botanic garden

e. given that this is a multi-faith based project, it appeal to a wide demographic within the local and larger communities. It is attractive to those with strong ties to conventional religious groups but attractive as well to those who have adopted a less-structured spiritual component of their lifestyle. Certainly there are no gender or age limitations associated with this project. The attention to accessibility (level, smooth access, adjacent parking, close proximity to washrooms, etc,) eliminates no visitors from enjoying the site. It is significant to note that the Arm River Valley, the lip of which features the Sacred Site, has a rich First Nations history and elders participated in the ceremonies that marked the completion of both phases 1 and 2 of the overall project.

4) The legacy associated with this project is the existence of a permanent site, accessible to all which:

1) provides an outlet for the need for spiritual connection with nature

2) promotes the concept of commonality within a large group of conventional faith groups

3) enhances the status of the Craik community and the Craik Sustainable Living Project

4) clearly illustrates the benefits of collaboration among partners

5) takes full advantage of the existing elements of the immediate environment

6) represents an extension of the Craik Sustainable Living Project into the social pillar of sustainable development

Describe the timing of your project (Please describe the date and length of time the project runs): 

Began in 2007

Keywords (Please list keywords, separated by commas, that relate to the project): 
Spirituality, reconnecting to nature
What level of education does this project address?: 
Public awareness, for example, through the media (informal education)
Describe any participation in your project from the grassroots community, youth, the poor/vulnerable, minority groups: 

The initial idea for the Designated Sacred Space Project was conceived by community members representing several organizations including the Craik Sustainable Living Project (CSLP), the Three Rivers Trail Association (TRTA), the Mid-Lakes Community Coalition and Multi-Faith Saskatchewan. Development of the specific project phases was spearheaded by the CSLP steering committee and Multi-Faith Saskatchewan volunteers. As well, a large number of community members participated in the official celebrations which marked the completion of phases 1 and 2 of the overall project. Phase 3 will be the responsibility of local members of the joint planning committee, members of the CSLP steering committee and other local community volunteers. It should be noted that support for the project has also come from individual donors and organizations such as the Craik United Church in the form of monetary donations.

Partners:

1) Multi-Faith Saskatchewan and the Craik Sustainable Living Project – concept development, project promotion, materials research and procurement, labor

2) RM of Craik #222 – authorization to develop the project on land at the proposed site

3) Town of Craik – endorsement of this grant proposal, project administration, authorization for use of the Craik Eco-Centre (restaurant, washrooms, project promotion space)

In terms of integration with other community initiatives, consider the following:

1) use of the Site by faith-based groups such as the Craik United Church and St. Joseph’s Roman Catholic Church congregations for special events

2) visitations to the Site by individuals and groups using the existing nearby

pedestrian trail system

3) collaborative development of events such as community homecoming celebrations and community tours

Upon completion of the Designated Sacred Space Project, Phase 3, the following features will ensure long-term use by a wide range of visitors from within the Craik community, the region and beyond:

1) emphasis on accessibility and safety for visitors

2) the setting provides opportunities to connect with and appreciate nature

3) wide appeal for various faith-based groups as well as those who profess a spiritualism beyond conventional spiritual groups

4) strategic location near Louis Riel Trail (#11 highway) and the town of Craik midway between Saskatchewan’s two largest cities

Project sponsors/funders: 

It should be noted that support for the project has also come from individual donors and organizations such as the Craik United Church in the form of monetary donations.

Partners:

1) Multi-Faith Saskatchewan and the Craik Sustainable Living Project – concept development, project promotion, materials research and procurement, labor

2) RM of Craik #222 – authorization to develop the project on land at the proposed site

3) Town of Craik – endorsement of this grant proposal, project administration, authorization for use of the Craik Eco-Centre (restaurant, washrooms, project promotion space)

How did you find out about this survey?: 

Data from recognition event 2011