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Faces of the Fraser Valley photo contest to bring more diversity to Chilliwack

The Chilliwack Progress is hosting Faces of the Fraser Valley, now through Jan. 9, 2022
“Local Immigration Partnership has decided to host a multicultural photo contest that will engage our whole community and connect with each other,” said Ronda Cushnie about the Faces of the Fraser Valley contest. (Zoom photo)

A Chilliwack-based group called Local Immigration Partnership (LIP) is launching an online contest called Faces of Fraser Valley – Heritage, Culture & Community as part of Multicultural week.

Participants are invited to submit photos of families, seniors and/or children that highlight cultural diversity.

“Several of LIP’s community partners brought forward concerns about a lack of diversity in photos used in the media,” said LIP Special Projects Coordinator Ronda Cushnie. “LIP has decided to host a multicultural photo contest that will engage our whole community and connect each other.”

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The Chilliwack Progress hosts the contest, which opened Nov. 19 and continues until Jan. 9, 2022.

There are more than 20 prizes to be won, including the grand prize of a $1,000 gift certificate for Harrison Hot Springs Resort.

A panel of community judges will pick the grand prize winner in January, 2022 and the winner will be announced Feb. 7, 2022.

Judges include Chilliwack-Hope MP Mark Strahl, Sto:lo Elder Laura Commodore, Chilliwack Councillor Jason Lum, Chilliwack Community Services executive director Diane Janzen, Métis Nation vice president Louis De Jaeger and Indigenous Service Navigator Leslee Picton.

I am hoping to see beautiful photos of Indigenous elders looking at the mighty Fraser river,” Cushnie said. “I’m hoping to see children of different ethnic backgrounds playing together or see the strength of an elderly man determined to try to walk.

“The endurance. The pride. The culture. A photo can say so much.”

A bank of submitted photos will be set aside for use by non-profit organizations or media on websites, social media and brochures.

“Maybe a little boy from Cameroon will feel more at home if he sees a little boy in an ad for the local pool,” Cushnie said. “We need representation of all in the media so that the faces reflected are of all of us.”

LIP’s community partners include the University of the Fraser Valley, YMCA, Chilliwack Society for Community Living, the Chilliwack Learning Society and Chilliwack Library.

LIP works with service providers, settlement agencies, community groups, employers and other key organizations across the municipality to create a welcoming and inclusive community for newcomers. The overall objective is to engage groups that will coordinate and enhance the current settlement and integration service delivery network and improve dialogue, information sharing between sectors, identify gaps and align services.

The Local Immigration Partnership enhances the coordination of services such as housing, employment, education and health and ensure that public services are leveraged to advance the social and economic well-being of newcomers. By focusing community actions and energy towards common goals, LIP creates a culture of collaboration which results in more value as service providers work together to pool resources and reduce duplication.

If you would like to apply to serve on the 2022 LIP Council, email

Find LIP online at or Instagram@ccsimmigrantservices


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Eric Welsh

About the Author: Eric Welsh

I joined the Chilliwack Progress in 2007, originally hired as a sports reporter.
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