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Saskatchewan’s Wanuskewin Heritage Park receives $1M donation

Wanuskewin Heritage Park near Saskatoon has hopes of becoming the province’s first UNESCO world heritage site by 2025, and a $1-million donation is certainly going to help.

On Tuesday, Co-op announced it was donating $1 million to Waneskewin Heritage Park in hopes of helping the park with program expansion and resource management activity.

“At Co-op, our vision is building sustainable communities together, and there’s no better demonstration of that than Wanuskewin Heritage Park,” said Heather Ryan, CEO of western Co-op.

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) aimed at promoting world peace and security through international cooperation in education, arts, sciences and culture.

In Canada, there are currently 20 UNESCO sites, but none within the province of Saskatchewan.

“We are going to be able to conserve and preserve this sacred site for generations to come,” said Darlene Brander, Wanuskewin Heritage Park CEO. “It’s going to mean we are recognized throughout the world as a world-class destination”

With a focus on its Indigenous roots, Wanuskewin is in the process of creating a bison viewing platform that will overlook 300 acres of native prairie pasture.

“Bison are a central element in our culture and our spirituality of the plains Indigenous cultures,” said Brander.

As part of a thank you for the donation, Co-op’s name will be added to the Bison viewing platform.

Wanuskewin will continue to develop and introduce new attractions and ways to preserve the land as they prepare for 2025.

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