Students from Muheim Memorial Elementary School present flowers to Sonia Palmer (Ska’sii’sik). (Annette Morgan photo)

Students from Muheim Memorial Elementary School present flowers to Sonia Palmer (Ska’sii’sik). (Annette Morgan photo)

Muheim Elementary School dedicates a Friendship Table to a special member of the Muheim family

Sonia Palmer said the ceremonies touched her heart

Muheim school students honoured Sonia Palmer with a Friendship Table for her work and relationship with the staff and students in sharing with the students about her Gitxsan culture and history.

“The students have been actively involved with Sonia for several years now, and this is a way for our students and school to show our deep appreciation to her,” vice principal Liliana Pesce said.

During a dedication ceremony for the table June 15, the students sang a special song that speaks to the negative impact of residential schools as well as the resiliency and courage of Indigenous communities who come together to support each other and celebrate their customs and traditions. ‘

“We Won’t Forget You” from Sk’elep School of Excellence was sung by the entire staff and student body of the school to Palmer.

There was student drumming during the dedication, with a special smudging ceremony performed by Mel Basil from the Dze L K’ant Friendship Centre, and speeches from staff and Palmer’s family members.

Annette Morgan, Palmer’s daughter, said her mother, is from the Gitxsan Nation, from the community of Gitanyow, and holds the traditional name Ska’sii’sik (to pull something together).

“Look at how many people she has literally pulled together here, it makes me very proud of her and the legacy she is making with these children, the school and the community,” Morgan said.

READ MORE: Friendship Centre prepares for National Day of Truth and Reconciliation

“It was so beautiful, and it touched my heart that my two daughters and granddaughter were able to be there to share such a special day with me. It was overwhelming and made me tear up,” Palmer said.

“For all of them to do such a special thing for me, is amazing.”

Palmer began going to the school over six years ago to share her heritage, culture and history with the students, and formed a very special bond.

“She cares about us, looks out for us and always reminds us to be safe,” one of the students said. “She always tells us we matter and we are loved.”

Palmer’s co-workers from the D’zel Kant Friendship Centre, School District Superintendent Mike McDiarmid, former and current students, staff and parents all gathered to celebrate the day with Palmer.



deb.meissner@interior-news.com

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Students from Muheim School presented Sonia Palmer with red roses at the MMIWG2-S ceremonies in Smithers May 5. (Deb Meissner photo)

Students from Muheim School presented Sonia Palmer with red roses at the MMIWG2-S ceremonies in Smithers May 5. (Deb Meissner photo)

The plaque on the Friendship Table dedicated to Sonia Palmer during ceremonies at Muheim Elementary School on June 15. (Deb Meissner photo)

The plaque on the Friendship Table dedicated to Sonia Palmer during ceremonies at Muheim Elementary School on June 15. (Deb Meissner photo)

Students from Smithers Secondary School showed up at Muheim Elementary School to honour Sonia Palmer at a Friendship Table dedication on June 15. Students having been working with Palmer for years learning her Gitxsan heritage and history as part of the curriculum. STORY PAGE A12

Students from Smithers Secondary School showed up at Muheim Elementary School to honour Sonia Palmer at a Friendship Table dedication on June 15. Students having been working with Palmer for years learning her Gitxsan heritage and history as part of the curriculum. STORY PAGE A12

One of the many projects Sonia Palmer has helped with is the banner that is used for many occassions, like Orange Shirt Day, made with the handprints from the students at Muheim Elementary School. (Deb Meissner photo)

One of the many projects Sonia Palmer has helped with is the banner that is used for many occassions, like Orange Shirt Day, made with the handprints from the students at Muheim Elementary School. (Deb Meissner photo)

Sonia Palmer thanks the students, staff, her family and friends that gathered to dedicate a Friendship Table at Muheim Elementary School in her honour June 15. “You have touched my heart today,” Palmer said. (Deb Meissner photo)

Sonia Palmer thanks the students, staff, her family and friends that gathered to dedicate a Friendship Table at Muheim Elementary School in her honour June 15. “You have touched my heart today,” Palmer said. (Deb Meissner photo)

Muheim drumming class performs during dedication of Friendship Table, June 15. (Deb Meissner photo)

Muheim drumming class performs during dedication of Friendship Table, June 15. (Deb Meissner photo)

Mel Bazil smudges the Friendship Table dedicated to Sonia Palmer on June 15 at Muheim Elementary School. (Deb Meissner photo)

Mel Bazil smudges the Friendship Table dedicated to Sonia Palmer on June 15 at Muheim Elementary School. (Deb Meissner photo)

Voices raised in love towards Sonia Palmer, the students from Muheim Elementary sing and sign a special song to her during ceremonies June 15. (Deb Meissner photo)

Voices raised in love towards Sonia Palmer, the students from Muheim Elementary sing and sign a special song to her during ceremonies June 15. (Deb Meissner photo)