June 21, 2021
Every June, Canadians are invited to celebrate the contributions of Indigenous peoples in Canada.
The City of Chestermere (where I live!) is located on the traditional territories of the Blackfoot and the people of the Treaty 7 Region in Southern Alberta, which includes the Piikani, Kainai and Siksika Nations; the Stoney-Nakoda, including the Chiniki, Bearspaw and Wesley First Nations; and the Tsuut’ina Nation. The City of Chestermere is also home to the Métis Nation of Alberta, Region 3.
We had the honour of attending the Aahkoomoohpii Ceremony (Blackfoot word for community) at Camp Chestermere a couple weeks ago. It was the ultimate demonstration of grace in the way Indigenous elders shared their stories (the full raw truth) and graciously made corrections when dignitaries spoke to help the audience understand how to navigate the steps needed towards a greater understanding and healing.
We wanted to highlight a couple of ways to support this community so you can follow as you listen, learn and elevate the voices of indigenous people.
Support Awasis Boutique
Indigenous business that creates products for babies, children and adults. The style is off the charts rad and super comfy plus this adds culture your wardrobe. As said on their website: “Representation matters. By supporting an authentic Indigenous business, you are helping to strengthen Indigenous voices, platforms and communities.”
Read My Name is Shield Woman by Ruth Scalp Lock
One of the Indigenous Elders at the Ceremony was Ruth Scalp Lock and she told her story and mentioned she wrote a book about her life. I ordered it off of Amazon and I highly recommend you read along with me too! Ruth tells her experience of attending a Residential School and the tragic experiences of abuse and addition. In the book she shares how she discovered spirituality and healing. The story is told by Ruth and the people who walked with her. Find it on Amazon!
Listen to NDP, MP Mumilaaq Qaqqaq give her powerful farewell speech
MP leader Mumilaaq Qaqqaq shared an important perspective as an Indigenous leader and her time on Parliament Hill. In hopes of making change for her predecessors she is continuing to advocate. Follow her social media for more.
Take University of Alberta Indigenous Studies course
Take the free online Indigenous Studies course offered by the University of Alberta to learn from an Indigenous perspective the key issues facing Indigenous people today. It highlights national and local relations between indigenous and settlers.
Thanks for reading and learning. We are going to get it wrong as we learn, but let’s be open to being graciously corrected in hopes of doing better to create safe places for all.
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