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We Speak! Fundraising Gala

March 11, 2016 @ 5:30 pm - 9:30 pm

$50 – $375

A Squamish Language Celebration

We invite you to join Kwi Awt Stelmexw for a celebration of the Squamish language and those working to bring the language back. We are thrilled to host this new gala in Metro Vancouver in recognition of important work that will make a lasting impact for future generations.

Our fundraising gala is an occasion to celebrate achievements and advancements in bringing back the nearly extinct Squamish Language. We hope you can join us for an evening filled with good food and good entertainment, as well as hear from the voices of this cultural revival movement.

(Scroll to the bottom to purchase tickets)


Charlie Demers is a stand-up comedian, playwright, and author of three books, including the bestselling essay collections ‘Vancouver Special’ and ‘The Horrors.’ He has performed comedy from coast to coast, for national TV and radio audiences, as well as at the Just For Laughs festival in Montréal. He is one of the most frequently-returning stars of CBC’s smash hit ‘The Debaters.’

The WE SPEAK GALA is proud to announce the keynote speaker for our gala: Maori educator, language activist, and proud mother Hana O’Regan coming from Aotearoa (New Zealand) for this special event.


Keynote Speaker


Hana O’Regan, Kāi Tahu

Hana O’Regan has recently taken up the position of General Manager Oranga – Wellbeing for Te Runanga o Ngai Tahu, her tribal organisation.  Prior to this appoinment she has held the positions of Director of the Student Services Division & the Kaiarahi / Director of Maori and Pasifika at the Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology.  Hana’s career has been largely focused on Māori language revitalisation and Māori educational achievement. She is an active advocate and driver for her Kāi Tahu tribal language revitalisation strategy.

Hana has held positions as the Manager of the Māori Language Unit of Ngāi Tahu, lecturer at the University of Otago, Lecturer, Head of School and Faculty Dean at CPIT. She has also held a number of memberships on national and local boards, advisory groups and review panels including the Māori Language Commission and Te Paepae Motuhake – a board established to review the Government’s Maori language strategy. Hana is currently a New Zealand Fellow on the International Centre for Language Revitalisation, ICLR. A proud mother of two children, Hana is committed to te reo in the home and intergenerational transmission of the language.


Event Details:

What to Expect: The We Speak Fundraising Gala features a delicious five course catered dinner; a silent and live auction full of amazing gifts, services, tickets to arts events, getaways and more; a raffle for exciting prizes; and a chance to make new friends, as well as meet the people who care about the future of Squamish heritage and identity.

Date/Time: Friday, March 11, 6:00 pm – 9 pm (Doors open and silent auction begins at 5:30 pm; dinner is served at 6pm; silent auction closes and program begins at 7:15 pm).

Location: Chief Joe Mathias Centre, 100 Capilano Road, Vancouver.

Tickets: $50 per individual ticket, $375 for reserved tables of 10. You can purchase/register all individual tickets and group tables through our site here (see below).


Menu: A delicious surprise menu with details to be announced closer to the event! Created by an Aboriginal chef from the Squamish Nation community. There will also be a cash/credit card bar for wine beverages. There will be gluten-free and vegan/dairy-free dinner options; however, we cannot guarantee that there will be no cross-contamination.

Accessibility: The Chief Joe Mathias Centre is fully wheelchair accessible. Please let us know when purchasing your ticket if you will require an accessible seat by adding an additional comment to your reservation. If you have any questions or require further specifications on accessibility, we are happy to provide more information (contact details below).

Parking: There is ample free parking in the lot beside the Chief Joe Mathias Centre.

Transit: Chief Joe Mathias Centre is a 10-15 minute bus ride from the downtown Vancouver at Granville and Georgia or 10-15 minute bus ride from the Lonsdale Quay Seabus.

Tax receipts: We can issue tax receipts for donations made at the event (please address cheques to Arts in Action Society).

Sponsorship: If you or your organization is interested in joining our visionary sponsors to support this event, please contact Nicki at 778-987-8809 or n_benson@kwiawtstelmexw.com to learn about our sponsorship benefits package.

Social Media: Tweet us your gala photos and thoughts to @KwiAwtStelmexw!

For more information please call 778-987-8809 or email contact@KwiAwtStelmexw.com.


Kwi Awt Stelmexw

Kwi Awt Stelmexw was formed in early 2015 to be a leader in the nation rebuilding efforts of the Squamish Peoples. After a century of cultural genocide policies by the Canadian government, the Squamish Peoples are still a resilient people with strong ties to our cultural values and dreams for the future.

The Squamish Peoples are the families and communities who are descendents of the original peoples of the Squamish Peoples’ territory. Our peoples’ territory includes present day Vancouver, Howe Sound, Squamish Valley, and Whistler. We live in nine communities spread along the Squamish River and Burrard Inlet. We are historically speakers of the Squamish Language — called Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Sníchim by speakers. Our blood ties connect us to our close and distant relations that make up the Squamish Peoples.

Kwi Awt Stelmexw is a Sḵwx̱wú7mesh phrase that can be interpreted as “the last people” or “the coming after people”. These in turn have been translates to mean “ancestors” or “future generations”. We took this name as a reminder that we are the ancestors to those unborn children to come.

Through partnership, support, and a strong mandate, Kwi Awt Stelmexw exists to “strengthen all aspects of Sḵwx̱wú7mesh heritage, language, culture, and art”. We first and foremost serve the interests and desires of our Sḵwx̱wú7mesh peoples, but also aim to build bridges with those who share our values.

We believe there is work to be done to help rebuild and grow the artistic, cultural, and linguistic dreams of our peoples. We hope to play a part of that as nch’ú7mut (one piece).


March 11, 2016
5:30 pm - 9:30 pm
$50 – $375
Event Categories:
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Chief Joe Mathias Centre
100 Lower Capilano Road
North Vancouver, British Columbia Canada
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Kwi Awt Stelmexw