Ongoing processes of colonialism have profoundly shaped and affected relations between the Canadian State and First Nations, and non-Indigenous and Indigenous peoples. Settler consciousness, which permeates through nearly every aspect of mainstream society, has allowed colonial practices and narratives to remain dominant within Canada.
What follows is a collaborative collection of past, present, and ongoing initiatives from across the territory now known as Canada, which contribute to the process of understanding and transforming settler consciousness, and rebuilding relationships between the Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples who share this land.
To navigate the collection, which is presented in the form of a prolific blog, you can select particular topics and sectors using the Categories and Tags sections on the right sidebar.
Teach for Canada provides education and support programs for teachers before and during their teaching in northern First Nations communities. Starting with a three week preparatory program, teachers receive mentorship and ongoing support to ensure successful tenure. The Ontario-based organization involves Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in its governance and program delivery.
The Sacred Trust is an initiative of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation in British Columbia. Its mandate is to oppose and stop the proposed Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline project, which would see approximately 900 km of new pipeline built alongside the Trans Mountain Pipeline so that the company can transport heavy crude oil from the tar sands in Alberta for refinement in foreign markets, through Tseleil-Waututh territory. This initiative is officially sanctioned by the Tsleil-Waututh Chief and Council. The website provides information on the Kinder Morgan proposal, an independent Trans Mountain assessment report published by the First Nation, and a section directing those seeking to support the initiative (through donations and political engagement).
Unreserved is a CBC radio program hosted by veteran Indigenous radio personality Rosana Deerchild. It is an on-air “space for Indigenous community, culture, and conversation” from coast to coast to coast. The program moves beyond the headlines, and introduces listeners to Indigenous stories, communities, music and individuals from across the country.
The show can be listened to online, or on CBC Radio One on Sundays at 7 pm and Wednesdays at 3 pm.
Groundwork for Change is a web-based initiative administered out of Treaty 1 Territory in Winnipeg, Manitoba. It was launched in June 2015, with the intention of providing non-Indigenous peoples with information to help them build just relationships with Indigenous peoples. This site is aimed at settlers who have begun a process of inquiry, and who are hoping to further their learning in respectful and meaningful ways.
The Groundwork for Change website is broken down into two broad sections. The first is inclusive of all the sections that allow visitors to learn (basics, issues, language, etc.) in order to build capacity, and the second includes those that allow visitors to act in solidarity, and to participate in local events. The site is always evolving, and visitors can contribute resource suggestions and event listings.
In Spring 2016, individuals from Grassy Narrows First Nation will travel 1700 km to Toronto, Ontario to address Premier Kathleen Wynne. They are demanding justice, and for the 9000 kg of mercury that was dumped in their river in the sixties to finally be cleaned up. On Thursday, June 2 a family friendly rally will be held at Queen’s Park in Toronto, where supporters can join in their call for justice.
A public speaking event featuring Grassy Narrows chief, Elders, women and youth, as well as Avi Lewis will be held earlier in the week, with details to be announced.
Supporters can learn more about the issues facing Grassy Narrows First Nation at: a) River Run 2010, b) CBC The National, c) Grassy Narrows Dummers, or read news articles about previous River Runs at: a) 2014, b) 2012, c) 2010
Supporters can also donate to help support travel costs to Toronto.
Facebook event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1769190633315081/?active_tab=highlights