The Switzmalph Cultural Society has for many years been committed to the conservation of the fragile eco-systems of the Shuswap Delta and the Salmon River, through cultural educational programs and the application of traditional ecological knowledge based on the teachings of Secwepemc Elder Dr. Mary Thomas.
Mary Thomas’ work as an environmentalist was colored by her respect for mother nature and her understanding that no more should be taken from the earth than is truly needed—a philosophy she tried to pass on to future generations. She was concerned about preserving and protecting traditional plants so they would be there for future generation, but she was also concerned about broader environmental issues as well—protection of the air, the earth, the water and the animals. And she recognized that all people, both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal, must work together to deal with conservation and environmental issues because everyone, regardless of their cultural background, is equally affected by threats to mother earth.
The Society is working to fulfill Mary’s Thomas’s dream – not only with the restoration and conservation of the Shuswap Delta and Salmon River but also the revitalization of cultural programs at the Mary Thomas Heritage Centre