Petting Zoo and Story Time Enhance Family Day

By Micheal Rios, Tulalip News; photos by Lynne Bansemer

The latest cohort of TERO Vocational Training Center (TVTC) students made some pretty cool memories with their family and friends during the spring session’s ‘Family Day’.

“We set aside a day every session to bring families together, allowing for the children of students to visit the training center and experience their parents’ success,” says Lynne Bansemer, Tulalip TERO Coordinator. “Family Day focuses on literacy as well. We partnered with Sno Isle Libraries who come in for storytelling, library card sign-up, book check out, and this year they brought gifts of learning materials and books. With funds provided by a grant, WKKF (Kellogg Foundation), TVTC made a large book purchase allowing for each child to leave with five brand new books.”

Making the day even brighter for everyone was the transforming of the training center into a temporary petting zoo filled with farm animals and even a young kangaroo. Animal Encounters provided the group of furry and feathered friends for both the kids and adults to hold and pet.

The gathering of students with their young children also allowed for some hands-on experience with trade skills. Several of the kids assisted their parents putting final touches on their personal projects. Whether it was hammering a nail or adding additional flare with some bright colored paint, the children apprentices made their presence felt.

“It really meant a lot to me for my son to watch me working at the training center and witness the positive things I’m doing with my life,” says TVTC student and Tulalip tribal member Rocky Harrison about his son Rocky Jr. participating in Family Day. “It helps instill good morals and work ethic into him at a young age seeing his father learning and doing hands on work. It brings me great pleasure to know that I am being the best father I can be to my son and that I am able to show him what it means to be a good father and hardworking man.”