The overarching theme guiding the design of the Siksika Health Campus is centred around the meaningful integration of Traditional First Nation Medicine with Western Medicine. The design includes six programmatic wellness components: the Elders Lodge, Acute Care, Youth Services, the existing Health and Wellness Centre, the Innovation Centre, and Tri-services. These components are arranged around the seventh and central wellness element, Traditional Healing. Together, they form a powerful symbolic and physical connection, further enriched by two landscape features: the ‘Elders Pathway’ and the ‘Children’s Trail.’
The ‘Elders Pathway’ signifies the importance of elders in First Nation culture. It takes the form of a linear pathway featuring traditional medicine planting beds, seating areas, and contemplative spaces. The pathway begins on the reserve, passes by the elders’ lodge and eventually leads to the center of the Traditional Healing landscape, where a symbolic sweat lodge sculpture stands. As it progresses, the pathway gradually blends into the natural landscape, representing the continuity of life.
In contrast, the ‘Children’s Trail’ illustrates the significance of youth in Aboriginal culture. Unlike a traditional path, it contains various landscape objects children can run and play between.
At the convergence of these two paths lies a powerful symbol of truth, highlighting their unity and the continuity of life; the Elders Pathway begins to fade away while the youth trail extends into the distance.