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

 

 

Glenn Trivett is kindly making possible an extraordinary opportunity for Kiinoo Mudwin alumnae and any other interested persons. He has made arrangements to conduct a two hour pipe ceremony and teachings at the Petroglyphs of the Anishinabek at Petroglyphs Provincial Park north of Peterborough, on:

Sunday, August 19th at 1 p.m.

Some of you may know that Glenn is one of a few Indigenous people who has permission to go down onto the large rock surface containing the more than 1000 Petroglyphs at Petroglyphs Provincial Park. He writes:

The ceremony anad teachings will speak to the historical origins of the rock carvings and interpretions of some of the most important legends etched in stone by my ancestors. These carvings are part of the most important cultural and spiritual sites in North America, the teachings there once obsessively guarded from the outside world. In this time of transition during the era of the Seventh Prophecy these teachings should be shared.

There is a beautiful interpretive Centre there as well. I will arrange for a picnic shelter for noon, adjacent to it if anyone wants to come early with a picnic lunch and a bit of a visit beforehand. There is a glass structure over the rocks themselves so the ceremoney will ahead rain or shine. Attendees may bring sacred items to the site as long as they comply with regulations under the Provincial Parks Act. I will be standing on the rocks to conduct the ceremony while others can stand on the wide walkways and benches that look down to the Petroglyphs. I will make time after the ceremony for questions but I warn anyone ahead of time that it will be limited as I will be drained physically and spiritually. I can arrange another time that is more local if there is a need for more follow up.

I charge nothing for this event although each vehicle entering the park will have to pay the usual day use fee. I will do this again if there is a demand for it but I do caution that I do not know when that may be.

Don't miss this extraordinary event! And please share this invitation with others.

Best wishes,

Gary W. Kenny

President, NFU-O Grey County Local 344

River Croft Farm
241270, Conc. 16
RR#1 Neustadt, ON N0G 2M0
E-mail:
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Tel: 519-799-5804

Mobile: 519-901-9440

 

We acknowledge that River Croft Farm is situated on the traditional land of the Three Fire Confederacy of the Ojibway, Potawatomi and Odawa people. 

 

https://www.ontarioparks.com/park/petroglyphs

 

 

Chiefs, elders, educators express disappointment at ON cancellation of curriculum development sessions

Several chiefs, elders, educators, and community members have expressed grave concerns and disappointments with the new Ontario government's decision to cut summer sessions forced on developing educational curriculum on Indian Residential Schools. "We have heard from many educators, Elders and knowledge keepers and share their frustration as this important work was dropped just before it was set to begin," said Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Deputy Grand Chief Derek Fox. "This is a step backwards on our journey towards reconciliation. The education of the youth in Ontario shouldn't be dictated by the party in power, but left to professionals who acknowledge that identity-building is the only positive move forward." Jodie Williams, co-chair of the First Nations, Metis & Inuit Education Association of Ontario, added that the government's decision betrays the province's commitment to reconciliation. The Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation is reportedly in the process of learning the reason for the cancellations.

High school student summer camp at SNP teaches STEM from Indigenous perspective

A new 15-day summer camp program offered at the Six Nations Polytechnic campus in Ohsweken is offering a STEM education from an Indigenous perspective. High school students who attend Gaodewayehsta Ohwejagehka (Learning on the Land) are connected with local knowledge-keepers and elders, and are able to earn a high school credit upon completion. "Kids learn better when they're involved directly with experiences on the land," said Doug Dokis, senior advisor for Actua's national InSTEM program. "Indigenous communities and people have always know this, so we've been developing these programs in as many communities across the country as we can." At the sister camp organized by Actua in Akwesasne, students have caught and dissected sturgeon, and were instructed about how traditional lacrosse sticks have been made with the spinal cord of the fish.

Educated Indigenous youth pose opportunity for Canadian economy

The non-Indigenous Canadian population is graying at a faster rate than any time before in Canadian history, write Jock Finlayson and Kristine St-Laurent of the Business Council of BC, but Indigenous peoples as a whole remain relatively young. As this group becomes increasingly well educated, they pose a unique opportunity for the Canadian economy. "The 2016 census higlights persistent socio-economic gaps between Indigenous and the rest of the population including substandard housing conditions and rising numbers of Indigenous children in care," the authors write. "However, there are also some positive trends - in particular, the emergence of a better-educated Indigenous population." The authors highlight the opportunity that this young, educated and expanding demographic, poses for employers who need help meeting their labour needs, while also improving the Indigenous communites' overall well-being.

U of T OISE librarian creates online resource for Indigenous educational content

Desmond Wong, a librarian at the University of Toronto's Ontario Institue for Studies in Education (OISE), has compiled a list of 50 Indigenous education resources in response to the cancellation of the TRC's curriculum writing se it'sssions for K-12 education, reports CBC. "I compiled these items so that teachers would have something that they could look to that are largely created by Indigenous educators, artists, and authors to bring those authentic world views into their classrooms," Wong stated. "I think it's a responsibility for all of us as settlers to learn about these things and to celebrate Indigenous people and Indigenous students for the gifts that they have and the knowledge that they carry." CBC adds that the reosources include books, Indigenous language materials, and TRC materials for educators.

 

 

 

BEE NATION

A Documentary Film by Lana Slezic

 

Watch the trailer link below:

https://www.beenationfilm.com/trailer/

 

HOST A SCREENING

Community Screenings

Community screening licenses are intended for cinema groups, non-profits, charities, and community organizations. Community screening fees are for a one-time public screening and are based on the number of people you expect to attend. License holders may keep their DVD copy but must seek permission for any subsequent public screenings. Screening hosts may offer a free event or charge admission to cover costs and/or fund-raise. Any questions? Please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Film runtime 81 mins.

SMALL COMMUNITY SCREENING
1-50 people
$100 CAD plus HST + $5 shipping and handling (regular mail within Canada)

 

MEDIUM COMMUNITY SCREENING
51-100 people
$200 CAD + HST +  $5 shipping and handling (regular mail within Canada)

 

LARGE COMMUNITY SCREENING
100+ people
$350 + HST + $5 shipping and handling (regular mail within Canada)

 

Promotional tools available upon request: poster, press kit, screening partner social media share kit.


EDUCATORS

If you are an educator please visit our FOR EDUCATORS page.

HOME USE

Bee Nation will be available on DVD for individual home use in 2018. Please subscribe to our mailing list and we will keep you informed about release dates.  

 

Check link below for full details:

https://www.beenationfilm.com/host-screening/

 

 

Indigenous educators puzzled, disappointed after Ontario cancels TRC curriculum writing sessions

A last-minute cancellation of curriculum writing sessions aimed at introducing more Indigenous knowledge and history into Ontario classrooms, in line with Truth and Reconciliation Commission calls to action, has been met with disappointment and frustration by Indigenous educators.

'It sends a terrible message,' says OSSTF president of cancellation at short notice

 
Rhiannon Johnson · CBC News · Posted: Jul 09, 2018 5:58 PM ET | Last Updated: 3 hours ago
 
Shy-Ann Bartlett, an Indigenous educator, travelled to Toronto from Nipigon, Ont., to be part of the TRC curriculum writing sessions that were set to start Monday before being cancelled at the last minute by the Ministry of Education. (CBC )

A last-minute cancellation of curriculum writing sessions aimed at introducing more Indigenous knowledge and history into Ontario classrooms, in response to Truth and Reconciliation Commission calls to action, has been met with disappointment and frustration by Indigenous educators.

Indigenous educators and Elders were supposed to convene in Toronto starting on Monday for the first of two writing sessions that would address revising the Ontario curriculum.

A message went out to the TRC curriculum writing team members on Friday that the Ministry of Education would be cancelling all summer curriculum writing sessions.

"I'm extremely disappointed; it's a pivotal part in our history to be able to move forward," said Shy-Anne Bartlett.

"The old education system definitely did a lot of cultural misappropriation this was our chance and our opportunity to bring to the table something that was authentic and real, teaching our children the accurate histories of Canada."

Bartlett, an Indigenous educator in multiple areas, was already in Toronto after traveling from Nipigon, Ont., when she received the email on Friday that the writing sessions would be cancelled.

'Sends a terrible message'

  1. Bischof, president of the Ontario Secondary School Teachers' Federation, said it is in the process of trying to track down details as to the reason for the cancellations.

"What we know, more or less what we saw on social media, where those who had been called to consult on the curriculum had been told the day before that it was being cancelled," said Bischof.

 

He said that now the federation is scrambling to catch up after such short notice and is "truly disappointed" about the news.

"How anyone could doubt that the curriculum needs to be updated and to do a better job at including Indigenous issues, having seen the TRC report," he said. 

"It sends a terrible message at this point to cancel at short notice this consultation and curriculum writing."

The meeting of educators was set to be a culmination of the work that has been going on over the last couple of years between the provincial government and Indigenous Elders, knowledge holders, and educators.

'It's not moving...reconciliation forward'

"It's really upsetting," said Peter Irniq, who has been involved in figuring out how knowledge about Inuit culture and history should be incorporated into the Ontario curriculum.

"It's not moving the TRC healing and reconciliation forward that would have allowed us to introduce Indigenous cultures into the classrooms of Ontario."

Maurice Switzer from Alderville First Nation was asked to participate in the curriculum planning session as an advisor. He said he received a phone call on Friday from the Ministry of Education informing him of the cancellation that left him disappointed and puzzled.

"There's been no explanation, certainly from the point of educators, and I think they are owed one," said Switzer.  

"We're talking about this huge gap in learning; teachers need to have the support of their government ministry and one way that is essential is in the provision of proper curriculum."

The office of Education Minister Lisa Thompson issued a statement Monday saying the ministry "will continue to move ahead with the updated Truth and Reconciliation Commission curriculum revisions" and will work "with experts, elders and Indigenous communities to develop the support materials for the updated curriculum."

The statement said "In keeping with the commitment Premier Doug Ford made to run government more efficiently, all ministries will seek to carry out initiatives in the most cost-effective way possible."

 

 

Mohawk program helps students transition from school to the workforce

Tewatohnhi’saktha, an economic development commission in Kahnawake, started Transitions with the goal to get vocational and post-secondary graduates valuable work experience.

'It gives us an opportunity to have someone in an important job while they’re gaining experience'

 
Jessica Deer · CBC News · Posted: Jul 09, 2018 3:22 PM ET | Last Updated: 6 hours ago
 
Jen Deer (right) and Raven Beauvais both graduated from a secretarial studies program and had the opportunity to apply their newfound skills at the First Nations Regional Adult Education Centre. (Jessica Deer/CBC)

Finding a job after graduation can be a daunting task for many students, which is why one First Nations community is helping make it a little easier.

Tewatohnhi'saktha, an economic development commission in the Kanien'kehá:ka community of Kahnawake, started Transitions in April 2016 with the goal to offer vocational and post-secondary graduates the opportunity to gain valuable work experience, and maybe even a full-time position in their respective fields of study.

"We noticed a trend where we put students through vocational training programs and they were coming back to us a few months after completing their programs, explaining that they were having some challenges with finding full-time employment," said Kara Paul, career programming co-ordinator.

The program allows recent grads a six-month work experience with the employer of their choice. The benefit for the employer, said Paul, is the subsidized minimum wage salary.

She regularly checks in on both the participants and employers for additional support services — addressing barriers such as transportation or child care needs.

"I really sit down with the students to do case management to identify those barriers and really try to rectify them so they can be successful," said Paul.

"I think it's quite unique because I don't think that there are many student placement programs where the organization is subsidizing the placement of students, especially graduates."

Thirty-four students have had work placements through the program since 2016.

Putting new skills to work

For Diane Labelle, the director of the First Nations Regional Adult Education Centre's (FNRAEC) Kahnawake campus, the program is one of a kind in her history working with Quebec's First Nations Adult Education School Council.

"I've not heard of it elsewhere," she said. "I'd like to see it in all other communities because it's beneficial for our trainees to actually gain a job within the community."

The centre has had three employees through the program, including 35-year-old Jen Deer who was hired as a full-time administrative assistant following her six-month contract.

"It gives us an opportunity to have someone in an important job while they're gaining experience, also get a chance to see how they're working with the possibility that we might be able to take them on full-time afterwards," said Labelle.

"You also get a chance to sort of help them fit or mould into the job, which was the case for Jen."

 
Diane Labelle, the director of the First Nations Regional Adult Education Centre, said the transitions program has been helpful to a new and growing organisation like themselves. (Jessica Deer/CBC)

Deer, a mother of four, said the program helped her find stable work to help support her growing family, and apply skills she learned in secretarial studies at a vocational institution.

"I like that this program leads to an opportunity to get a job because interviews and searching for a job on your own — it's a challenge," said Deer. "This gives us an opportunity to actually prove who we are and what we can do."

Raven Beauvais, 22, is another recent graduate working at the centre. She's nearing the end of her contract in the school's administrative department. Although she won't be offered a position, she said the experience has been worthwhile as she prepares to apply for other jobs.

"It has helped a lot," said Beauvais. "I have learned a lot of new tricks and work ethics. It has really helped me with time management."