Former Lytton resident Stephen Lytton was presented with the Governor General’s Caring Canadian Award by His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada, at a Mar. 4 ceremony in Vancouver.
Stephen Lytton was one of 150 Canadians recognized for their excellence, courage or exceptional dedication to service at the ceremony.
His citation reads: “Stephen George Lytton, Vancouver, British Columbia:
Refusing to accept the marginalization of First Nations people with disabilities, Stephen Lytton has volunteered with the British Columbia Aboriginal Network on Disability Society since 1991, where he currently serves as president. Under his leadership, the Society promotes Aboriginal participation in community planning and provides disability, health and social support services throughout the province.”
Created in 1995, the Governor General’s Caring Canadian Award recognizes living Canadians and permanent residents who have made a significant, sustained, unpaid contribution to their community, in Canada or abroad. According to a news release, “Often working behind the scenes, these individuals volunteer their time and efforts to help their fellow citizens. The award also brings to light the example set by volunteers, whose compassion and engagement are a part of our Canadian character.”
Lytton is a member of the Nicomen Indian Band within the Nlaka’pamux First Nation. He lives with a disability (cerebral palsy), and is a residential school survivor who spent 13 years in Lytton’s St. George’s Indian Residential School, starting when he was a young child.
An accomplished actor, writer and presenter, Stephen Lytton has presented both in western and eastern Canada to various groups regarding his personal experiences in residential school as an Aboriginal person living with a disability.
He was the subject of a short documentary titled “The Language of Love” which has been described as featuring his “raw and poetic articulation of the 14 years he endured in the residential school system - a child’s survival redefines itself as the artful embodiment of a man.”