Founded in 1985, the North Island Wildlife Recovery Association (NIWRA) is a non-profit, world-class rehabilitation facility situated on 8 acres of immaculately manicured grounds, caring for animals with all types of needs, including birds with broken wings, orphaned black bears, electrocuted eagles and much more! NIWRA’s main goals are to: Reintroduce as many animals back to the wild as possible. Educate the public about wildlife and environmental issues. We are able to offer the most current wildlife care practices from rescue to release thanks to: staff who keep up to date with training and techniques expert veterinary care customized diets specialized handling equipment and housing a graduated system of healing protocols (described in our Black Bear Rehabilitation, Bear Cub Program, and Raptor Rehabilitation information) This knowledge has allowed us to offer top-notch education programs and tours for our guests.
Many believed that Christopher Columbus was the first european to discover North America in 1492. That was until 1960 when Norwegian explorer and writer, Helge Ingstad. He was making an intensive search for Norse landing places along the coast from New England northward. At L’Anse aux Meadows, a local inhabitant named George Decker, led him to a group of overgrown bumps and ridges that looked as if they might be building remains. They later proved to be all that was left of that old colony. For the next eight years, Helge and his wife, archaeologist Anne Stine Ingstad, led an international team of archaeologists from Norway, Iceland, Sweden, and the United States in the excavation of the site. According to a 2019 PNAS study, there may have been Norse activity in L'Anse aux Meadows for as long as a century.This proved that Christopher Columbus was not the first European in North America. There are Norwegian legends around Leif Ericsson that vaguely tell of the settlements in what is now Greenland to Newfoundland (known the as Vineland), retold by Adam of Bremen, a German cleric. "He (The Danish king, Sven Estridsson) also told me of another island discovered by many in that ocean. It is called Vinland because vines grow there on their own accord, producing the most excellent wine. Moreover, that unsown crops abound there, we have ascertained not from fabulous conjecture but from the reliable reports of the Danes." The belief is that it had been an outpost for ship repair. Perhaps the reason that there are no trees in the area to this day. Evidence of butternuts that grow further south have been found, which eludes to Vikings exploring the coast further to the south. Butternuts are not known to grow north of New Brunswick. Also Eleanor Barraclough, a lecturer in medieval history and literature at Durham University, suggests the site was not a permanent settlement. There had been no graves, tools for agriculture or remains of livestock common to the time found. The history of the area goes much farther back then the Viking settlement. There is evidence of yarn that predates the settlement which was found December 23, 2018 by Michele Hayeur Smith of Brown University in Rhode Island "They clustered into a period from about 100 AD to about 600-800 AD – roughly 1,000 years to 500 years before the Vikings ever showed up. (The Dorset)are manipulating the kinds of fibres you find in your environment at least as early as 100 BC." L'Anse aux Meadows is one of the most historically interesting places to visit in North America. There are many secrets that have been revealed about the peoples who have inhabited the area. Quite positive there will be many more!
Malaspina's lost galleries became something of legend before it was rediscovered by Professor George Davidson in 1902. Professor Davidson was intrigued after reading the book, Voyage Around the World... By Spanish explorer Alejandro Malaspina. In the book there was an illustration of the galleries. Though this illustration was said to be of a formation in the neighbourhood of the Port of Descanso in the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Professor Davidson knew the area quite well and became frustrated that he could never locate the Gallery. He enlisted help from John Devereux, dock master at Esquimalt, asking Devereux to bring his 27 years of experience sailing the coast, and his contacts with “the lighthouse people, the telegraph people, and Catholic missionaries” to bear on the question of where the curious rock formation illustrated in the Voyage Around the World... might be found. Malaspina Galleries, officially named the “Galiano Gallery” by the Geographic Board of Canada in 1906. Since then there has been some debate regarding the actual name of the landmark. Having Galiano’s name on Gabriola had proven too difficult for many writers, even E.O.S. Scholefield, who would be one of the first to hunt for the gallery. In his book of B.C. History, published in 1914 and the standard reference of B.C. history for many years after. He included a copy of the illustration from Malaspina’s Voyage around the world... and labelled it: “View of natural gallery on Galiano Island”. Others, not surprisingly, followed his lead. The Snunéymux people held this landmark in high-regard because of it's inexplicable shape. Appearing as a wave frozen in time by some mysterious force, holding it over the many thousands of years.
After many years of searching within to resolve our differences and celebrate our shared commitment to the ministry of Jesus Christ, we are now looking outwards at how to be a more vibrant Christian voice in our community. We welcome new ideas, new people and new energy! Our Church family resembles our island community in its long-standing friendships, care for our neighbours and wide welcome for newcomers – our community has much to offer you!