Little Red River Cree Nation sets students up for success

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Transcript for Little Red River Cree Nation sets students up for success

Narrator
Welcome to John D'Or Prairie, seven hours north of Edmonton. John D'Or Prairie is one of three communities that belong to the Little Red River Cree Nation. Since 2016, they have been working on several infrastructure renewal projects that are improving facilities and services for both young and old.

Tom Henderson
Vice-Principal, John D'Or Prairie School

It's been great. I mean our school has changed completely. I think the students are really happy. I've been here since pre-renovations and now post-renovations, and it's almost like a different school. Our Cree room used to be our library and they redid the Cree room so now it's got a place inside where you can smudge, you can have ceremony and things like that, and also there's a classroom portion to it. Our lunchroom has been fully renovated, our kitchen's been fully renovated so it's large enough for us to have 50 people in there for a round dance, which is going to be pretty great for Orange Shirt Day.

Narrator
Because of the renovations that were done in the John D'Or School, there are now spaces dedicated to helping students with both academic and personal challenges.

Aukje Kapteyn
Counselor, John D'Or Prairie School

I'm Aukje Kapteyn and I'm a counselor and I work with students with emotional issues or family stuff or grief and loss to help them through rough times so that they can be present academically. I was in a little tiny office before. So, this office; I can do groups here. There's just more space in the hallways and when you come into the school you just feel welcomed, I think, so that's what's really nice about the school.

Tom Henderson
Vice-Principal, John D'Or Prairie School

With partitioning and having our new junior high school wing and just dedicating that to junior high school, it's almost as if it's a different part of the building. So those students don't see all the others and give them an experience for older students where they kind of have their own space. One of the things that the kids and the community's really proud of is our new playground. So that is down the elementary wing, just to the back, and it's a huge new playground. Some of the kids were saying it's a playground exactly like some of the ones that you see in Edmonton, maybe better, so it's a really nice playground and the students are really happy with it. One of the first renovations, we've got a curtain that separates our gym. While it's not the most intense renovation, it's been really useful for our gym to have a lot more activities.

Narrator
School improvements aren't the only projects happening in the Little Red River Cree First Nation these days. There have also been investments made in improving drinking water quality, communications capacity and road access to ensure residents are able to live with a better quality of life.

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