Terry Fox: Inspiration in Action Pilot Project Marks Completion to Support Young Learners and Honour Fox Family’s Métis Heritage

September 29, 2021

Coquitlam, B.C. – A newly announced collaboration between the BC Sports Hall of Fame; the Terry Fox family; Indigenous Sport, Physical Activity and Recreation Council (I·SPARC); Métis Nation of British Columbia (MNBC); and the Coquitlam School District (SD43) provides new insight into Terry Fox’s Métis heritage through the development of a series of lesson plans for young learners.

The Terry Fox: Inspiration in Action Lesson Plans for elementary schools are now available to educators across the province to support young learners from Grades 4 to 7. Through the Inspiration in Action Lesson Plans, students will explore Terry’s life story through a new lens, examining his family’s discovery of their Métis ancestry – while further exploring what it means to be Métis.

“Having the opportunity to further celebrate Terry’s story through the creation of these lesson plans has been an incredible honour for our family and will remain a source of pride for us all,” says Darrell Fox. “We were inspired upon learning of our family’s Métis heritage on our mother’s side and through direct consultation with MNBC, and we hope that this project will further inspire young Canadians, particularly those with Métis ancestry.”

The completion of the Terry Fox: Inspiration in Action Lesson Plans pilot project functions as an extension of the continued need for educational BC sport resources for students and teachers that complement the First Peoples Principles of Learning. These lesson plans will soon be available on ShareEd BC and heroinyou.ca/terry for educators as reference points that can be incorporated into their curriculum.

“Working with the Fox family to discover their Métis roots has been an exceptionally rewarding experience for MNBC,” says Debra Fisher, MNBC Minister of Education. “Learning requires exploration of one’s identity, and for a hero that is so important for Canadians in BC and beyond, students now have a new opportunity to explore how identity and personal values can be linked to culture.”

The creation of these learning materials was inspired first and foremost by Indigenous people who have lived in the area now known as British Columbia (BC) for more than 10,000 years – including First Nations, Inuit and Métis. These nations, each with their own distinct traditions and history, have shaped and contributed to BC’s diverse sport heritage.

Of note, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in call to action #87 appeals to:

“. . . all levels of government, in collaboration with Aboriginal peoples, sports halls of fame, and other relevant organizations, to provide public education that tells the national story of Aboriginal athletes in history.”

In honour and respect of this call – and all Indigenous nations – the BC Sports Hall of Fame in collaboration with I·SPARC, set out to enhance its educational outreach and programming through the establishment of a series of lesson plans to celebrate the outstanding contributions of Indigenous athletes.

When the Fox family recently shared the incredible story of discovering their Métis family heritage, the Inspiration in Action working group of collaborators determined that Terry Fox could be the initial focal point of the first phase of lesson plan(s) developed.

“Terry’s legacy continues to be a tremendous source of inspiration for people across Canada and the Fox family’s exploration of their Métis ancestry is incredibly exciting for our organization,” explains I·SPARC Executive Director Rick Brant. “I·SPARC is firmly committed to providing opportunities that inspire Indigenous people to move, play, and compete. Learning about Terry’s Marathon of Hope in a way that encompasses the full scope of his heritage will further add to that inspiration.”

“The BC Sports Hall of Fame is honoured to have been a part of seeing this project to fruition,” says Lara Mussell Savage, Trustee, BC Sports Hall of Fame and Education Committee Chair. “We take great pride in our responsibility to tell engaging stories, including the intricate stories of those who have come before and continue to inspire us today. This collaboration with the Fox family, I·SPARC, MNBC, and the Coquitlam School District expands upon our work in celebrating Indigenous athletes through the award-winning Indigenous Sport Gallery and our Hero In You youth education programs.”

The completion of the Terry Fox: Inspiration in Action Lesson Plans marks the first of what will be a series of lesson modules inspired by Indigenous athletes that will be available to educators across the province.

“As a graduate of School District 43, Terry Fox has always held a special place in our hearts and that is why we are especially proud to have successfully piloted the Terry Fox Inspiration in Action Lesson Plan at École Glen Elementary, his former elementary school,” explains SD43 Superintendent Patricia Gartland. “I am confident that these lesson plans will serve to ensure Terry’s legacy will continue to grow and be of great inspiration to students across this district and across the country.”

For more information about the Terry Fox: Inspiration in Action Lesson Plans, please visit: shareedbc.ca or heroinyou.ca/terry.

About The Terry Fox Family:

The family of Terry Fox lost their son and brother early and publicly. Terry knew before he passed away that there would be an annual run in his name and helped to establish the values and vision that the organizations that bear the Terry Fox name adhere to and proudly shares today. Betty Fox, with Rolly Fox close by her side, stepped up to speak for Terry when he no longer could, accepting a role in the development of the Terry Fox Run which would later evolve into The Terry Fox Foundation. The direct descendants of Betty and Rolly Fox fulfill a governance role with the Terry Fox Foundation, Terry Fox Research Institute and Terry Fox Centre as members with defined responsibilities and roles. They are also charged with being the lead on initiatives that wish to honour Terry’s legacy or communicate his powerful and moving story.

About MNBC:

Métis Nation British Columbia (MNBC) represents nearly 90,000 self-identified Métis people in British Columbia, approximately one-third of the Indigenous population in B.C. The Métis National Council, the Government of Canada, and the B.C. Government recognize MNBC as the governing body for the Métis people in B.C. MNBC develops and enhances opportunities for Métis communities by implementing culturally relevant social and economic programs and services for all self-identified Métis within B.C., regardless of citizenship with MNBC.

About the Indigenous Sport, Physical Activity & Recreation Council:

I·SPARC is a consortium of the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centres, the First Nations Health Authority, and Métis Nation BC. As the stewards of the Indigenous Sport, Physical Activity, and Recreation Strategy (BC), I·SPARC works with First Nations, Métis Chartered Communities, Friendship Centres, schools and other sport and physical activity stakeholders to deliver community-based programs designed to promote active lifestyles and support the desire for transformative change in the health and well-being of Indigenous communities, families, and individuals across BC. For more information, please visit: www.isparc.ca.

About the BC Sports Hall of Fame:

The BC Sports Hall of Fame celebrates extraordinary achievement in B.C. sport history and inspires future generations to make their dreams come true.  As a non-profit charitable organization, the Hall curates an astounding collection of 27,000 heritage artifacts and 100,000 archival documents representing 150-years of sport history in British Columbia. Through Hero in You Youth Education Programs, the BC Sports Hall of Fame reaches over 6,500 young learners each year across the province, advancing a mission of building outstanding community legacies by honouring the past and inspiring the future.

For more information, please visit bcsportshall.com or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram @bcsportshall.

About SD43:

School District No. 43 (Coquitlam) is located in the Metro Vancouver region of B.C. and serves the cities of Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam and Port Moody (Tri-Cities) and the villages of Anmore and Belcarra. SD43 is the third largest school district in B.C. with 32,000 students in 70 schools.

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Media Contact

Josh Kilner
BC Sports Hall of Fame
778-989-1469
jkilner@lbmg.ca

Nick Hosseinzadeh
Métis Nation British Columbia
778-996-6425
nhosseinzadeh@mnbc.ca