Reason to celebrate at CGH

Here's a chance to tour the newly renovated sections of Chilliwack General Hospital and learn something about its expansive hundred-year-old history.

Here’s a chance to tour the newly renovated sections of Chilliwack General Hospital and learn something about its expansive hundred-year-old history.

A public open house celebrating two major CGH milestones — the completion of the $35 million redevelopment and the hospital’s 100th anniversary — is on Feb. 18 in the ER seating area.

Members of the public are invited to tour the modernized facilities and view the specially commissioned artwork created by local aboriginal artists.

The talented featured artists include Stan Greene, from Skowkale, who has carved a medicine man from red cedar, who is kneeling to gather healing herbs. There are hundreds of healing plants considered sacred and central to indigenous medicine.

Artist Francis Horne, from Tsawout and Lummi, submitted a carved panel of a medicine woman and her helpers made out of yellow cedar. Horne noted that women are recognized not only for leadership qualities, counsel and wisdom but also for maternal instinct and natural healing.

George Pennier, from Chehalis, created a red cedar spindle whorl. Traditional whorls were carved from stone, shell, bone, and whale vertebrae but wood was the most common material. His piece will feature Coast Salish symbols including: frog (representing health); salmon (representing the Stó:lō people); a long house (representing a healing place); and will be eight feet in diameter.

Bonny Krulicki, from Skwah, has designed five large banners featuring Halkomelem words of healing. Halkomelem is an ancient and spiritual language of the Stó:lō people and the artwork offers a contemporary presentation. Krulicki has crafted a healing wheel image spotlighting five words:

l’haw: to heal, to be healed;

aylexw: to live, live well, be well;

tamexw: to hope, to have hope;

xholmet: to care, to care for someone; and

sayem: to be strong.

The Feb. 18 open house will be held in the ER seating area —— in between the ER and the lobby from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Event organizers say in addition to some pay parking on-site at the hospital there will also be free parking available across the street at Prospera Centre, 45323 Hodgins Ave.

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