Having attended the most recent Skeena Queen Charlotte Regional District Board meeting this past January 21st in Prince Rupert, I am happy to report that the Representative for Area E, Sandspit, Moresby Island, brought a motion to the table as a late addition to the agenda, that will address the need for indoor pool facilities for the communities of Haida Gwaii.
It was devastating to learn in December of 2010, after a full two years or expectation, that the Greater Massett Development Corporation, the owners of the old pool that closed in Masset due to becoming obsolete, had decided that they were not in the business of recreation centre development. This after originally communicating in public meetings that they were following up with plans to create a new rec centre for the Massett area. What a let down it was, again, in particular for the children who love to swim, but also for all the people who enjoy the health and social benefits of a leisure / pool facility.
However, on the other hand, we the public finally have the opportunity to act on our own now without the restriction of this private group, who did not hold public meetings except once per year. After all, such facilities are best planned through comprehensive community consultation, particularly in areas like ours with smaller populations and tax bases.
I encourage the people of the Charlottes / Haida Gwaii to take this issue “by the horns” and encourage their representatives at all levels of government to create forward movement on pool and related recreational facilities development. As we all realize, this will require innovation in terms of energy production, and multi-use facilities, but these options are available and a lot is possible with good, solid, transparent planning. I want to encourage all residents of the islands to support the Queen Charlotte Regional Recreation Commission of the Regional District in seeking additional funding in the upcoming Regional District budget to address this planning need.
Our children are not getting any younger, and neither are we for that matter.
Karen Lovisa Church,
Director, Masset Eagles Swim Club;