A Calgary woman with roots in Kamloops made a two-day trip to the Tournament Capital this week, visiting multiple sites to promote community building and local business.
Lorelei Higgins was crowned Mrs. Globe Canada at a pageant in November 2020 in Las Vegas, entering the competition with the goal of using the platform to speak about world peace.
“It’s like the most exciting job in the world,” Higgins said.
On Wednesday , Aug. 4, the 40-year-old mother dropped by Kamloops City Hall and visited the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to pay her respects following the discovery in May of probable graves on the site of the former institution.
“My family is Indigenous and, while I’ve been to some other residential school sites, it’s always a sombre moment to sit in the place where the children still are and where their stories are held,” Higgins said.
The day before, Higgins dropped by The Lampost downtown, where her aunt works, and spent some time with local day care programs as part of a multi-city tour.
She has also visited Salmon Arm on this tour and, on Thursday, will be in Kelowna.
Higgins’ role involves promoting peace building, a large part of which involves elevating female voices and helping people contribute to everyday peace-building initiatives in their communities. She also hosts community dialogue workshops and Indigenous relations training in her role as Mrs. Globe Canada.
The platform has been an exciting one for Higgins, who is of Métis heritage and whose mother grew up in Kamloops, where Higgins still has a large family presence.
“It has has always felt like home since I spent almost every summer here,” Higgins said, noting she is happy to be promoting community building during this difficult time of the COVID-19 pandemic and wildfires.
Mrs. Globe pageants are held by the Women In Need Foundation and all proceeds from the events go to supporting women in emotional empowerment, with a special focus on abuse recovery.
As Mrs. Globe Canada, Higgins is a spokesperson for the charity, but her day job is the City of Calgary’s community lead for the municipality’s anti-racism portfolio.