We have had a busy few months and that’s a good thing! Here’s a little update on what we’ve been up to.
Youth Ambassador Program
DWF is excited to have completed its first ever Youth Ambassador Program back in August. We had the chance to work with 50 incredible students where they had the chance to participate in making Bannock, completed a painting workshop with Patrick Hunter, learn about financial literacy, learn how to network with a representative from RBC, spoke to Tanya Talaga about communications and writing for a career, and much more in the span of 4 weeks.
National day for Truth and Reconciliation
This year marked the first National day for Truth and Reconciliation on September 30. Many Legacy Schools completed amazing reconciliACTIONs in their schools, clubs and communities to bring awareness in their own way.
“Students at Ecole Puntledge Park lined their favorite creek side trail with painted rock moccasins from each student. Left as single moccasins we hope the community members who walk the trail will think of those children who never made it home, the families left behind and those still dealing with the trauma.”
Students at St. George Elementary in New Brunswick showed their support by wearing orange and completed a walk and activities about the importance of understanding Canada’s true history with residential schools.
Harriet Visitor, DWF Board Of Director, and Chanie Wenjack’s niece was able to visit three Legacy Schools in Sudbury, ON to take part in the many wonderful events they had planned including St. Benedict Catholic Secondary School‘s Walk for Wenjack.
Secret Path Week (Sept 17th – 22nd)
We had the honour of witnessing 19 incredible guest speakers that delivered great experiences for Legacy Schools throughout Canada and even a class in Florida! We started off Secret Path Week with a DWF LIVE session with Angela Miracle Gladue who joined us for the third year in a row. Classic Roots, DJ O’Show, Ecko Alec, Julian Taylor, Harriet Visitor and G.R. Gritt were just a few of the many amazing sessions that took place. If you did not get to see any of the performances live do not worry! Everything is up on our YouTube @ The Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund. https://www.youtube.com/thegorddowniechaniewenjackfund
Ecole Puntledge Park, BC
We wanted to give a special shout out to all the guest speakers, schools, and everyone involved for making this unforgettable week incredibly special. Everyone involved had such an amazing and informative session that we cannot wait to see you at our next live session. We will be hosting at least two DWF LIVE sessions each month with the help of our friends at Exploring by the Seat of Your Pants (EBTSOYP).
Treaties Week (Ontario – Nov 1 – Nov 5)
Well, what is it? – “Treaties are agreements, voluntarily entered into by both parties, which provide for peaceful relations between the two nations. They are more than a simple written document; they are sacred agreements between the First Nations peoples and the British Crown with the Creator as witness.” (Office of the Treaty Commissioner, 2008)
Why is this week so important? – It aims to help people in Ontario and throughout Canada better understand the importance of relationships built between Indigenous Peoples and the Crown.
We have plenty of resources under our Treaties section found in our Legacy School Programs tab. https://downiewenjack.ca/our-work/legacy-schools-programs/resources/#toggle-id-5
Métis Week (Alberta – Nov. 15- Nov 21)
Métis Week is an opportunity for Métis people to share their stories, history and culture with people across Alberta. Louis Riel Day is held every year on November 16, the anniversary of Riel’s execution in 1885. During that year, Riel led Métis people in the Northwest Resistance, which took a stand against the Government of Canada because it was encroaching on Metis rights and way-of-life.
Check out our upcoming events for live sessions about these dates of significance. https://downiewenjack.ca/news-events/event-calendar/