The following are projects accepted by the HIP screening committee.  If you wish more information, please follow up with the contact person mentioned.

One Laptop per Child Canada  (Funding currently on hold - check back for update

Update February 2017

The community of Summer Beaver First Nation in northern Ontario are in very serious need of laptops for their students who are transitioning to distance education for Grade 9. The kids aren't even sure how to save a file so when they receive their 25 new laptops, the learning will begin. Thanks to donations from the Rotary Clubs of Port Perry, Northumberland Sunrise and Picton this is all possible. We look forward to other clubs providing laptops to this and other communities in the future.

Update May 2016

Indigenous communities nationwide are working hard to enhance education for local youth by developing partnerships with governmental bodies and not-for-profit organizations. One such organization. OLPC has received requests for educational technology for more than 19,000 Indigenous students in 160+ communities located in 9 provinces and 2 territories. OLPC Canada connects Indigenous education programs to technology designed with 21st century students in mind. To date, the initiative has provided laptops and tablets to more than 10,000 Indigenous youth located in 60+ communities from coast to coast. The laptops and tablets are preloaded with educational content including books and interative programs highlighting Aboriginal languages and cultures. With many outstanding applications from small, remote First Nation, Inuit and Metis communities nationwide, there is a significant opportunity for Rotary clubs to have a tangible impact on Indigenous education by sponsoring an education program or group of students to receive technology through OLPC Canada. The tablets cost about $100/child. There are approximately 60 unfunded communities. $1,000 could help out 10 children. For more info, please contact them at infThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Update -October 10, 2014

One Laptop per Child Canada in partnership with TD Bank Group have successfully delivered 400 customized tablets to the Simon Jacob Memorial Education Centre in Webequie. Webequie is an Indigenous community north of Thunder Bay.  This partnership will enable 1,200 youth to access technology in their communities.

As well, the Neskantaga Education Centre will accept 20  XO tablets and 8  XO laptops on October 15, 2014.

Please read the success stories section for the full stories.  Congratulations to all involved!

One Laptop per Child Canada


If interested in partnering with One Laptop per Child Canada, please contact them via email at:  infoThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by calling  416-642-5455.

Elephant Thoughts


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 Elephant Thoughts recently was awarded a prestigious award for their work in promoting science. Please see link for the good news announcement.

  If interested in information, please contact Lisa Farano via email    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.    or by phone   705-444-8032


Adventure in Understanding

 Adventure in Understanding is the brainchild of PDG Don Watkins. Don was DG in 7080, but has moved to our district (7010). The idea sprung from a visit to Trent University to hear Joseph Boyden read from his book. In the room was the Canada One canoe (Queen's Jubilee flotilla) and the rest is history.

We have been working very closely with Camp Kawartha and Trent's Indigenous Studies program. Glen Caradus and employee of Camp Kawartha with extensive canoe experience both in the Kawarthas and on James Bay where he lived in northern communities there, will oversee the 'on the water' piece of this.

The trip will start with an orientation and swim test at the Ecology Park in Peterborough. In the morning the group will head out to Trent. We have been invited by Trent University to join in the orientation for first year Indigenous Studies students. We are of the understanding that Lily from the community of Trout Lake(Third World Canada Tour) will be one of the first year students. Trent has offered us the Tepee for the overnight stay.

From there, the group heads to Camp Kawartha for the next night. Camp is finished for the summer season at that time, but will have some staff there to serve. Because Glen is on staff, he will have all the Camp resources available.

Curve Lake FN will send an Elder to meet the goup at the Petroglyphs for an interpretation on day #3. The following day, Glen will have access to the islands owned by Curve Lake, that have historically used by fishing guides.

The trip will end at Curve Lake where the village is planning a welcoming feast. Members of the RC of Peterborough Kawartha will also be invited to attend.

Don has met all the requirements of the District 7010 Insurance Requirements. We have engaged a lawyer to review the waivers, and Code of Conduct that MUST be signed by parents, guardians and participants. We have a strict NO drugs, alcohol or cell phone policy(Glen will have a phone). At no time will the group be any further than 40 minutes from Peterborough, and if need be, campers will be picked up if the conduct is not appropriate.

Don Walkins has been working on this for two years, and anyone who knows Don will quickly recognize his attention to detail. As you can see, this is shaping up to be one of those Youth Initiatives that has the adults looking on saying "I wish I could go".



A cross-cultural learning experience for Indigenous and non-Indigenous young adults


Canoe trip on the Trent Severn Waterway


A group of 20 people - campers 16-18 years of age-8 Indigenous and 8 non-Indigenous

Leaders - elders, Outward Bound trained leaders, experienced canoe trippers

2 Indigenous and 2 non-Indigenous


3 or 4 large style canoes capable of holding 10 paddlers each


August 30 - September 4th, 2015

Gather at Beavermead Park, Peterborough - Sunday afternoon/evening

Mon. - Lock 20 & Liftlock 21 to Trent Campus

Tues. - Locks 22 to 26 to Lakefield and Lock 27(Young's Point) to Camp Kawartha

Wed. - Wolf Island Provincial Park

Thurs. - Curve Lake First Nation

Contact:  Don Watkins  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.







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The third annual Adventure in Understanding program was an outstanding success. The crew of 20 youth, 16 to 18 years old, and 4 leaders travelled the 100km route from Peterborough to Curve Lake First Nation in three voyageur canoes. This year, there were six youth from Curve Lake FN, as well as one each from Shubenacadie First Nation(Nova Scotia), Long Point First Nation(Quebec) and North Spirit Lake First Nation(Manitoba).

The crew also included eight new Canadian immigrants who arrived within the last year from Kenya, China, Iraq, Syria and the Phillipines.

The New Canadian participants are all talking about the trip as a life-changing experience. Not only did they learn to paddle and enjoy being on and in the water, they will be attending their ESL classes in the same school as their First Nations friends from Curve Lake.

The six day, five nights, canoeing/camping experience provided many opportunities for the paddlers to connect with the land and water around them and the rich history of the Anishinaabe of Curve Lake First Nation.

One of the many highlights noted was the opportunity to hear the youth drumming at the Curve Lake Powwow grounds, while watching the northern lights dancing above the waters! As co-ordinator, Glen Caradus remarked "the best way to get to know your neighbours is to go and say "hello".

Adventure in Understanding is a voyage of individual growth and self-awareness as participants learn and teach, speak and listen, serve and be served. It is a voyage of discovery that will light a spark of awareness that will burn as a strong force in the minds and hearts of these youth as they mature into the leaders of tomorrow.

This program was developed by the Rotary Club of Peterborough Kawartha in co-operation with Curve Lake First Nation, Camp Kawartha and the Canadian Canoe Museum to provide an opportunity for First Nation and non-native youth to share experiences as they learn and travel up the Trent Severn Waterway. The all-inclusive $300 per person cost is made possible in part this year because of support by the Community Fund for Canada's 150th, a collaboration between the Community Foundation of Greater Peterborough, Community Foundations of Canada, the Government of Canada and extraordinary leaders from coast to coast to coast.

2015 Update

 We request your financial assistance for the “Adventure in Understanding”, which is a five day trip by voyageur canoe covering approximately 100 KM on the Trent Severn Waterway, from Peterborough to Curve Lake First Nation.
A  program was designed by the Rotary Club of Peterborough – Kawartha with the assistance of Curve Lake First Nation and Camp Kawartha for First Nations and non-native youth, 16 to 18 years of age, who are proud of their cultural heritage and motivated to both learn and share their cultural identity.

The inaugural voyage, held the last year in August 2014, was an outstanding success.

During the “Adventure” the participants:

  • Travelled over the Peterborough Liftlock             
  • met students in the Indigenous Diploma Program at Trent University
  • discussed the `Ring of Fire` and land use concerns with  Mohawk environmentalist Dan Longboat
  • visited the 8,000 year old archeological site at Burleigh Falls
  • travelled to the “teaching rocks” at Petroglyphs Provincial Park
  • visited James Whetung and learned about the Chemong Lake wild rice beds
  • played native games, practiced native skills, swam, sang, shared stories, made new friend

Fundraising Goal: $7,500

Contact the Rotary Club of Peterborough Kawartha website for details on how to donate.








Robert Wells, Author


Update - January 2015


A Kickstarter campaign has been started to produce a forty-five minute educational documentary of Indian Residential Schools based on my book 'Wawahte'. This is a
not-for-profit endeavour. Upon completion, this documentary will be made available to all Canadian schools at no cost. It will also be made available to the world on
Youtube. We ask for your support either by making a donation, or by helping spread the word. The cost of production is $16,000.  To date, $9,000 has been raised but if the remainder is not raised before February 28th, this project will not be possible.  You can find out more at:  Click on the book icon and a short video clip will play to explain the Residential Schools story.

If you would like to donate to make this possible, please contact the author at email address below.  Thank you for your continued support!

Update - October 7, 2014


Beginning October 15th, 20 Wawahte Educational Book packages will be shipped to Toronto District Catholic secondary schools.  Kingston friends made this beginning of the Wawahte Book Project possible.  Personal reconcilation involvement to promote teacher/student understanding helps to create youth awareness of Indigenous peoples and issues that affect First Nations and Canada - is good!  The cover letter with stationery will include the HIP logo providing Rotary/HIP due credit and will be placed in the individual packages of three books and one audio book going to each school.  The remaining 113 Toronto schools is hoped to be completed during the first half of this school year.  If you would like to provide funding assistance, please contact the author.  Your support is kindly appreciated.




Mission - Our mission and vision relates to three specific areas of focus - peace and conflict prevention/resolution, supporting basic education and economic and community development.  Wawahte tells the experiences of three friends who trusted the author to write their stories.  Their childhood was much the same as those of more than 150,000 Aboriginal children who, between 1883 and 1996, were forced to attend one of 130 residential schools and equally demeaning day schooling in Canada.  Written in two parts, Wawahte also tells the history of how the opinion of a handful of people became widely accepted by a nation, giving rise to official programs that were publicly touted as beneficial, but which actually discriminated against entire ethnic groups.


Vision - Circulating Wawahte to provide Canadians, primarily students, knowledge and understanding on a dark part of our past so that we have a chance to create a more inclusive and harmonious future for all Canadians and Aboriginal peoples everywhere.  Wawahte, written at a grade seven reading level and included discussion points (page 175-176) will help teachers address a shared concern.  Specifically, the books for Toronto are hoped to be delivered by December 2014 as an unsolicited, "sponsored" gift to the Indigenous Advisors at the two Toronto school boards to distribute to teachers assigned to deliver the indigenous secondary school "elective subject" curricula and/or secondary school libraries. 

Within a wider distribution area, it is also desired to have sponsorships making it possible to distribute a combination of Wawahte books and Wawahte audiobooks to publicly funded high schools and teacher education program providers throughout Canada.  The author makes these books available to the Rotary HIP program at $8.00 per copy plus handling and shpping.


Who We Help:


As a teaching tool, Wawahte will assist provincially mandated aboriginal education and interdisciplinary teachers to bring First Nations, Inuit and Metis history and perspectives into the classroom.  Indigenous and non-Indigenous students alike will gain a knowledge and understanding of a little-known part of Canadian history.  For Indigenous students, the book will foster a strong sense of identity and positive self-image.  For non-Indigenous, the book will add a rich dimension of understanding as well as strengthen opportunities to explore, appreciate, understand, and value the contributions of Indigenous communities to the social and cultural fabric of Canada.  It is today's students that will go forth to become our future leaders, and hopefully build and more inclusive community of Canadians than what now exists.


Now is the time to challenge and change this legacy.  The outcome of this challenge will determine whether our children face a darker tomorrow or one thriving in greater human harmony with the rest of Canada.


Finally, we understand that the best way to engage young people is to empower them through education to go forth with knowledge of our history.


If you would like to support this initiative by providing a sponsorship or funding, please contact:  Robert (Bob) P. Wells, Author  at   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..





Rotary Club of Calgary - Tom Jackson Stay in School Program





Click link below to see the full program description.


The Rotary Tom Jackson Stay in School (RTJSIS) initiative started with discussions between Rotarians, United Way, other no- for-profit service providers and Indigenous leaders, beginning in the summer of 2010. Since then, Tyler Cran from Rotary South invited Tom Jackson (his close friend) to one of the meetings and Tom was kind enough to lend his influential name to the initiative. A few Rotary clubs decided that they would like to participate.

The Rotary Club of Calgary has organized and developed a Stay in School Program that operates in five of the city's elementary schools. The program is designed to encourage students from families who may be socially excluded and may not have the same opportunities as others who are more fortunate and may otherwise drop out of school to continue with their education. One of the program's highlights is mentoring which has been a proven approach to helping children and youth identify and build on their strengths, and foster their innate resilience to life's challenges and changes. To date, Rotary South, Crowchild, Rotary Club of Calgary East, Rotary Canmore and Bricktown Rotary Oklahoma, have all moved forward with their program plans along with a few other clubs in the district.

The Rotary Club of Calgary has also decided to focus the RTJSIS initiative to support Indigenous youth. The club will be incorporating much of their current Stay In School model for the RTJSIS initiative, leveraging it to support Indigenous youth in particular and working with our new partners and corporate Calgary.


To positively impact Indigenous children's high school graduation rates through mentoring, tutoring, and general support across Canada and throughout North America.


The initiative will be a nationwide group of people, Indigenous speakers and leaders, other service clubs, not for profits, charities and partners that are all interested in supporting Indigenous youth to stay in school, graduate and be inspired to be all that they can be.


  • Constant and continuous communication
  • Transparency, openness and clarity
  • Integrity
  • Inclusiveness
  • Open-minded inquiry
  • Balanced and informed presentations
  • Accountability
  • Responsiveness


  • To partner with other Rotary clubs, service clubs, external "partners" and corporate partners for mentors, funders and general support in all capacities. Corporate partners working with Indigenous nations would be ideal.
  • To partner with elementary schools that will be able to identify children that are Indigenousl, from families who may be socially excluded and may not have the same opportunities as others who are more fortunate and may otherwise drop out of school rather than continue with their education.
  • To serve as an incubator for a catalogue of valuable information, connections and services to create awareness and education as well as support Indigenous children to stay in school.
  • To provide effective leadership development through mentoring programs such as the Alberta Mentoring Partnership.  Free On-line Mentoring Training (  Other programs are available for a fee.
  • To build a Mentorship Training Certificate program with Brenda Gladstone at Galileo Educational Network to include guidance from an Elder.
  • To explore International Rotary Partnerships that would be eligible to receive matching funds from The Rotary Foundation.  Future Vision Plan - Rotary Foundation District and Global Grants(
  • 3-5 years in the future - to provide unique and creative translation related to Indigenous education and awareness to plicy makers and the general public.

The overall goal for the RTJSIS initiative is to support Indigenous youth to stay in school and graduate Grade 12.

If you would like to become a partner or provide funding to this very successful program, the RTJSIS would welcome your support.

Contact: Catherine Brownlee This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 403-861-2001.