Update on things happening in Rotary and indigenous communities, including current events – Rotary luncheons with guest speakers, open community and cultural gatherings, etc.

 

 

New schools coming to 4 northern Manitoba First Nations

After fighting for better educational facilities for more than a decade, Bunibonibee Cree Nation, God's Lake First Nation, Manto Sipi Cree Nation and Wasagamack First Nation have signed a contract to build four new schools in their communities.
 
Jamie-Lee McKenzie · CBC News · Posted: Nov 16, 2018 12:33 PM CT | Last Updated: November 16
 
Four new schools will be built in Bunibonibee Cree Nation, God's Lake First Nation, Manto Sipi Cree Nation, and Wasagamack First Nation (Fernand Detillieux/CBC)

Four First Nations communities in northern Manitoba will be getting new schools.

After fighting for better educational facilities for more than a decade, Bunibonibee Cree Nation, God's Lake First Nation, Manto Sipi Cree Nation, and Wasagamack First Nation have signed a contract to build four new schools in their communities.

"This is a historic moment for these four communities, indeed for Canada, in that this is one of the largest infrastructure contracts that the government of Canada has ever signed with First Nations," Minister of Indigenous Services Jane Philpott announced in Winnipeg Friday morning. 

The schools are also being built with First Nations culture in mind.

"Each school has been specifically designed with the participation of community members who know exactly what they need and what the reality should look like," Philpott said. "The schools have been designed with the needs, the traditions, the perspectives of First Nations peoples in mind." 

Bunibonibee Cree Nation, God's Lake First Nation, Manto Sipi Cree Nation, and Wasagamack First Nation have signed a contract to build four new schools in their communities. (CBC News Graphics)

All education in the communities will be grounded in traditional First Nations knowledge with Elders being part of the education.

This is a huge step for education in remote First Nations communities. 

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Setbacks hit water treatment projects for Ontario First Nations

The situations in Neskantaga and Slate Falls are examples of the challenges Ottawa faces meeting its target to clear all long-term boil-water advisories in First Nations by March 2021.
 

Neskantaga and Slate Falls thought they'd be rid of years-long water advisories by now

 
Jorge Barrera · CBC News · Posted: Nov 17, 2018 4:00 AM ET | Last Updated: November 17
 
Roy Moonias says Neskantaga First Nation is tired of making do with its small, outhouse-like water station, after a new water treatment plant failed to arrive in May. (CBC News)

The filtered water station by the motel overlooking Attawapiskat Lake is the only place Neskantaga First Nation residents can get clean water for free. And project co-ordinator Roy Moonias is worried about elderly people slipping on ice formed from spills when temperatures drop below freezing.

The small, outhouse-like structure — which serves the community of some 300 people — "shouldn't be here," said Moonias. Neskantaga was supposed to have a new water treatment plant back in May. 

"Now we have to suffer more, using this system."

The fly-in Ojibway community, about 433 kilometres north of Thunder Bay, Ont.,, is under the country's longest unbroken boil-water advisory, first imposed in 1995.

It was supposed to be lifted this past spring, but things didn't go according to plan.

It's an example of the challenges Ottawa faces meeting its target to clear all long-term First Nations water advisories by March 2021. Even when projects are announced and money flows, remote communities pose challenges. Weather is particularly disruptive from fall through spring, and if equipment breaks and it can take weeks to get new parts. Those delays often lead to finger-pointing. 

This water station is the only free filtered water available on Neskantega First Nation. The band's projects coordinator, Roy Moonias discusses the issues with it 1:49

Ottawa said in December 2015 Neskantaga would get a new water treatment plant, committing later to completion in "late spring 2018."

But spring came and went as construction continued. Now, Indigenous Services projects completion for March 29, 2019.

Moonias says the community is growing frustrated with the slow place.

He says Indigenous Services budgeted $8.8 million for the project. Kingdom Construction, based in Ayr, Ont., offered to do it for $5 million, though he now expects delays will drive the price up. Technically, the community must foot the bill, though Ottawa has said it's willing to help with cost overruns. 

Moonias alleges the company "wasted two months last year because they said the First Nation didn't have adequate equipment." 

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Campbellford Rotarian Helps Ojibway Women’s Shelter

Cathy Beamish, past president of the Rotary Club of Campbellford, has been helping collect purses for the Ojibway’s Women’s Lodge in North Bay. She has been working with Lola Lawton, founder of Relay for Hunger, part of True North Aid, who is spearheading this and other similar fundraisers. Photo by Sue Dickens

Lola Lawton, founder of Relay for Hunger, which is part of True North Aid, personally delivers the items

“At the Ojibway Women’s Lodge we provide a community based, cultural and holistic healing approach to ending violence against all women.”

November is Woman Abuse Prevention Month in Ontario

Article by Sue Dickens

Campbellford – “I do what I can.” Those five words spoken by Cathy Beamish is how she humbly takes her responsibility as a driving force here who was recently seeking donations for the Ojibway Women’s Lodge, in North Bay.

This is not the first time Cathy has put her energy into a worthwhile project like this. Last year while President of the Rotary Club of Campbellford she put a call out for and collected winter clothes (hats, coats, boots, mittens, blankets) that were sent to the north for First Nations people. It was called“The Great Northern First Nation Coat Drive,” and is an initiative of Honouring Indigenous Peoples (HIP).

Lola is always on the go. She is a part of HIP (Honouring Indigenous People) which is a Rotary inspired organization. Here she and HIP Chairman Chris Snyder look at the world’s largest four directional dreamcatcher which Lola made.

Cathy works with Lola Lawton, founder of Relay for Hunger, which is part of True North Aid, and is also part of an initiative to help HIP (Honouring Indigenous People). Lola lives in Flinton.

 “Lola is amazing. She is a part of HIP which is a Rotary inspired organization,” Cathy said.

This time Lola had contacted Cathy to let her know she was campaigning for the I.D. Me project, which is an identification project for a battered women’s shelter in North Bay. It’s a First Nations Women’s Lodge.

To gather support for this, her latest project, Cathy messaged her friends and wrote, “Well my friends last year we collected over 500 coats, hats mitts etc. for First Nations. This year I would like to get 50 purses to send to an Ojibway Women’s shelter. It is through True North Aid again. If you can put a few essentials in the purse that would be wonderful, brush toothbrush, gloves, hat, scarf etc all easily bought at the Dollar store. Anyone interested in helping please contact me.”

 

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The 2018 John LL. J. Edwards Memorial Lecture: Senator Murray Sinclair

Monday, November 19, 2018 - 5:00pm to 6:30pm
 
 
Location: 
Hart House Debates Room, 2nd Floor, 7 Hart House Circle

The Centre for Criminology & Sociolegal Studies, Faculty of Law, and Woodsworth College cordially invites you to attend our 2018 John LI. J. Edwards Lecture.

Named after the founder of the Centre for Criminology and Sociolegal Studies, John Ll. J. Edwards, this is an annual public lecture on issues related to criminal law, crime, policing, punishment, and security.

The Accidental Jurist: Thoughts on a life in the law

Presented by Senator Murray Sinclair

Senator Sinclair served the justice system in ­­Manitoba for over 25 years. He was the first Aboriginal Judge appointed in Manitoba and Canada’s second.

He served as Co-Chair of the Aboriginal Justice Inquiry in Manitoba and as Chief Commissioner of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC).

Senator Sinclair has been invited to speak throughout Canada, the United States and internationally, has won numerous awards for his leadership, mentorship and advocacy, and has received Honorary Doctorates from over a dozen Canadian universities. Senator Sinclair was appointed to the Senate on April 2, 2016.

Introduced by Lee Maracle, Si'Yam, Indigenous Studies, University of Toronto


Date: Monday November 19th, 2018

Time: 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm - reception to follow

Location:
Hart House Debates Room
2nd Floor, 7 Hart House Circle
University of Toronto
http://harthouse.ca/maps-directions/


Attendance is free of charge but registration is required.
Please RSVP by Wednesday November 14th, 2018 to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

If you are a person with a disability and require accommodation, please contact Maria Wowk at 416-978-3722 x239 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to make appropriate arrangements.

Sponsored by the Centre for Criminology & Sociolegal Studies, Faculty of Law, and Woodsworth College.

 

 

The fourth annual Indigenous & Ingenious Show and Sale is a truly remarkable show and sale featuring 18 Indigenous artists and artisans with authentic Indigenous-made products. Paintings, moccasins, beadwork, books, jewellery, stained glass, leatherwork, wood and antler carvings, candles and clothing created by some of the best Indigenous artists/artisans will all be available at this maker's market. Our line-up includes: Chief Lady Bird, Skye Paul, Joseph Sagaj, Mel Bartel, Keitha Keeshig-Tobias, Barb Nahwegahbow, Clayton Samuel King, Aura, Denise Aquash, Donna Morrison Seary, Summer Faith Garcia, Susan Hill, Wesley Havill, Theresa Burning, Tammy Enosse, Brian Wright-McLeod, J'net Ayayqwayaksheelth, and Jackie Esquimaux Hamlin and Brian Hamlin.

Indigenous food will be offered throughout the weekend, for eating in or take-out, by D'jmaawin Catering. Gail Stup and her son Joe from Beausoleil First Nation will be preparing food typically found on the Pow Wow trail - Indian Tacos, Corn Soup, Venison Chili, Scone Dogs, and Indian Cookies and Pie.

Shandra Spears Bombay returns for performances throughout the day. Shandra is a hugely-talented hand drummer and singer.

Admission is $5.00 and that gives you a chance to win our mega-door prize - a gift basked filled with goods produced and donated by the Indigenous & Ingenious participating artists and artisans. Everyone is welcome! Tickets available at the door.