Kingston Indigenous Language Nest (KILN) has put out a call for volunteers as it gets prepared for the spring and summer seasons.
Warmer weather means KILN can engage in more on the land programming, and this year the Language Nest will have a designated home base for the first time.
KILN has been operational for 8 years, beginning as conceptual conversations around a table and continuing to grow year after year.
Now for the first time the Language Nest has access to a building they can call home, taking over their new location on Montreal Street at the beginning of March.
Executive Director Constance Carierre-Prill says that the organization getting access to a relatively permanent space makes current programming and future expansion much easier.
"It's a complete game changer for us that's going to really allow us to expand our operational capacity," Carierre-Prill said.
"When you don't have a building or a site to store your supplies and to organize from it becomes challenging at a certain point."
KILN staff and volunteers have been busy cleaning, organizing and furnishing the new space, and are aiming for a soft-launch in mid-April with a grand opening sometime in the month of May.
An assured, dedicated space allows for more drop-in programming and to more easily collaborate with the Indigenous Food Sovereignty Garden in setting up a food sharing hub.
Carierre-Prill says the space both helps improve language programming, and expands KILN's ability to support people in ways outside of language programming.
Right now, KILN is looking for volunteers to help tend the Indigenous Food Sovereignty Garden, as well as the new tiny forest that boasts hundreds of tree species in a small cluster.
This year KILN is also partnering more closely with Loving Spoonful, and will be expanding to offer a home garden kit.
The Language Nest is looking for volunteers to both put together and receive the home garden kits.
Carriere-Prill says these kits will be able to be used in a variety of urban settings.
"Whether somebody just has a deck, or a small balcony or even a sunny window there's going to be home garden kits going out through Loving Spoonful," Constance said.
She added that Indigenous families will also be receiving cultural components like traditional medicines through these kits.
KILN has sent out a survey to help organize and connect with volunteers.
Story by Owen Fullerton, YGK News, for the Local Journalism Initiative