NAN Decade Youth deparment is now accepting registrations for Seven Sacred Teachings 2007
The Seven Sacred Teachings Youth Suicide Awareness Conference will take place from February 5-9, 2007 at the Best Western NorWestor Resort and Hotel in Thunder Bay.
Please check out the NAN Decade Website at www.nandecade.ca for information on registration, and updates on workshops and guest speakers
The following Toronto Star story is available online by clicking here ...
We move Kashechewan at its peril - Canada must listen to aboriginal people before making decisions on their behalf, says Marie Wadden - Dec. 13, 2006 - MARIE WADDEN
It's a shame Alan Pope, the former Ontario cabinet minister who has recommended the federal government move Kashechewan from James Bay to an area outside of Timmins, didn't speak to Jennifer Wynne when he was on the reserve.
She should have been his first stop.
Wynne is the community's NNADAP (National Native Alcohol and Drug Addiction Program) worker. That program is 25 years old this year and there's a drug addiction worker on most First Nations reserves who knows why their communities aren't working.
"He didn't come to my house, or my office either," Wynne says. "I wish he had."
Wynne would have been Anastasia Shkilnyk's first stop. Like Pope, Shkilnyk was sent by the federal government to a reserve devastated by water problems. It was 1976 and the community was Grassy Narrows near Kenora, where mercury from a pulp and paper mill had polluted the local river.
She found a community devastated as much by alcohol as by mercury. She documents the social chaos in her book, A Poison Stronger than Love.
She learned the downfall of these formerly self-sufficient Ojibway was caused by their forced resettlement from one reserve to another; from self-sufficiency to dependency. A delicate balance in their lives had been upset by policy-makers who went ahead with plans that ignored the wishes of the very people they were supposed to be "helping."
"People are very emotional in Kashechewan right now," Wynne says. "They don't know what to do. Whenever we talk about moving, people start to cry. They're depressed."
Wynne is describing a people who are at the very edge of their resiliency; their ability to cope with change and setbacks. Many on the reserve have dysfunctional ways of coping, mainly through alcohol and drugs.
Wynne estimates nine of every 10 adults in the community abuse alcohol, when they can get it. Like most aboriginal reserves, Kashechewan is supposed to be dry.
Wynne says bootleggers make $80 to $100 selling an average size bottle of vodka or rum on the reserve in the fall. The price drops in winter when the ice creates a road to the nearest liquor store, several hundred kilometres away. The price of bootlegged booze is usually a good indicator of a community's need to escape reality.
In the course of the Atkinson series, Tragedy or Triumph: Canadian Public Policy and Aboriginal Addictions, we've learned a lot about the high cost, financially and socially, of making and enacting policies for aboriginal people that does not engage them and that ignores their social fragility.
Two evaluations criticize the strategies Health Canada and the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development have used to help relocate the Innu of Davis Inlet, Labrador, to a beautiful new place called Natuashish.
The evaluators say our failure to properly involve the Innu initially when their healing plan was created and to ignore their social healing needs, have set back the community's recovery. New housing and a better infrastructure have given the former residents more motivation to stop drinking, but the healing is still in its early stages.
Kashechewan needs healing, too, and it should start now, before any move takes place. It will take years to build new houses wherever the people decide to go and this time must be used wisely.
Wynne needs a lot more help. Funding for a vital Health Canada position — a "wellness worker" — ran out this summer. The wellness worker runs addiction prevention programs. Why is there no one in this job? If ever a place in Canada needed a wellness worker, it's Kashechewan.
Wynne would like more training, especially in counselling. She is concerned that talk of moving permanently will create divisions in the community and upset people already weakened by addiction and its partners — sexual abuse and fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. Kashechewan has only one mental health worker.
According to Health Canada's formula (one drug addiction worker for every 700 people) Wynne should have a partner. She'd like it to be a man because, she says, men in the community are not comfortable talking to her.
"I was sexually abused," she says openly, "and I know I couldn't talk about that with a male worker, I needed to speak to a woman. If we're going to help the men with their problems, they need men to talk to."
A team of mental health and wellness workers is needed in Kashechewan right now to help prepare the people for the big decisions ahead.
If we've learned anything from our short but disastrous history of interference in aboriginal lives, it's that they must be active participants in all decisions made.
We move Kashechewan at its peril. Kashechewan's troubles won't go away because the children have access to more arenas and public swimming pools, and their mothers can work behind the A&W counter or sling hamburgers at a McDonald's.
Ask the people who live on reserves that encircle Kenora, Thunder Bay, Sudbury, Goose Bay, or Williams Lake in B.C., if their lives are better than those of the people of Kashechewan. They'd say "no." You don't see many aboriginal people working in these towns, nor do their children feel welcome in many of the local public facilities.
The social problems on the reserves surrounding Canadian towns and cities are often so extreme that people are too insecure to leave the reserve.
Joe Linklater, the chief of Canada's most remote and socially healthy aboriginal community, Old Crow in the Yukon, told us you don't have to live near an urban centre to be a healthy aboriginal community. What is needed is a large land base to continue nurturing the aboriginal cultures' spiritual relationship with the natural world.
We have a lot to learn in Canada about making good policy for suffering aboriginal communities. We won't learn until we start to listen to the people who must always bear the brunt of our "good intentions."
One informed Kashechewan resident is telling us her people need to heal their hearts and minds before they can move anywhere and we should be listening.
Overcrowding growing concern at Whitedog school
By Mike Aiken - Miner and News - December 13, 2006
Barb Mach tries to keep focused on a tutoring session, but it’s hard to do.
Her lesson’s taking place in a converted staff room at Wabaseemoong School with 15 special ed students from a Grade 7/8 class.
“It’s exactly the environment they have trouble in,” she said.
Due to bureaucratic foot dragging, the building built for a capacity of 260 children from kindergarten to Grade 12 had 320 in September. The new construction promised for next fall 2007 might be ready for 2009.
“Students have been given hope so many times,” said Wabaseemoong (Whitedog) First Nation band councillor Waylon Scott on Tuesday. “It’ll get to a point where they’ll say ‘It’s not going to happen’.”
Since classes began, an estimated 50 have dropped off the rolls. With 70 per cent of enrolment in Grade 3 or younger, the band’s education authority is considering some drastic solutions.
One includes sending the high school students to Kenora, where they can get access to shops, optional courses and more extra-curricular activities.
While it may allow children access to classrooms, it may not solve related problems including the high drop-out rates among aboriginal students at local schools.
The vice-principal at Wabaseemoong First Nation School, Gaye McDonald, said the two-hour bus ride would make it very difficult for the senior students who have family responsibilities.
McDonald noted many of them are already parents, which would make the commute or a billeting situation very difficult for all involved.
Indian and Northern Affairs Canada spokesman Tony Prudori said Ottawa has approved design work on the new building, as well as the assignment of two portables to ease overcrowding.
Negotiations with the former Liberal government had included a personal pledge by Treasury Board President Reg Alcock to oversee the project. However, he and his government were defeated last January, causing further delay in the tendering process.
In recent years, renovations have helped with a sinking foundation, shifting walls, buckled floorboards, bent doorframes and an electrical panel that was separating from the wall.
A breakdown in the aging furnace last Christmas caused the plumbing to burst and flooding in the gym. The rebuilding of the 34-year-old school could cost an estimated $18 million.
The library and radio room have been converted for space, along with the front room in a teacher’s home, which has become a classroom for up to 20.
In the fall, National Chief Phil Fontaine paid a personal visit, along with MPP Howard Hampton. Both have applied pressure to federal government staff, leading to personal contact with senior staff at Indian Affairs and Treasury Board.
Regional Chief Angus Toulouse and Grand Chief Arnold Gardner were scheduled to visit the school Tuesday, but cancelled the night before. Band council received a note after 11 p.m. Monday saying the trip was off, Scott said, but he didn’t elaborate on the reason for the cancellation.
Fog grounded flights in and out of Kenora Tuesday morning, but it isn’t clear how this affected the regional chief since he was due to arrive in the city the day before. Calls to the Chiefs of Ontario and Treaty 3 offices weren’t returned Tuesday. The meeting was scheduled even though the two political bodies announced their split late last week.
The new school would have a capacity of between 400 and 450, which would solve many of the issues with crowding, said McDonald. It would also bring children in care home to the community, she added, noting the lack of classrooms is an obstacle.
The community has an on-reserve population of 876, but there are an estimated 200 children in care. Bringing these wards of the state back into the First Nation is an important issue for the band leadership.
In recent years, Whitedog has seen the creation of a new water treatment plant, water tower, children’s aid office and renovations at the youth resource centre. However, the completion of the Treaty 3 police substation continue to linger, as it also deals with a shifting foundation.
Much of Whitedog is located on clay or swamp, which makes it difficult for engineering.
The following two news stories dealing with Indigenous rights show how the government is trying to "take care of" First Nations by doing what they think is best for the people and their communities without consulting with them. The first story from CBC deals with the recent announcement that the government is repealing section 67 of the Canada Human Rights Act. The second story addresses the issue of the government's efforts to block the United Nations Indigenous Rights Declaration from being passed.
Native groups warn of 'disaster' over rights act changes - December 13, 2006 - CBC News
Native groups slammed the federal government on Wednesday for not consulting them on proposed changes to the Canadian Human Rights Act that would give aboriginal people the right to challenge federal legislation governing First Nations.
Aboriginal people in Canada currently cannot launch complaints about the Indian Act under the Canadian Human Rights Act, because of a specific section in the law that exempts the Indian Act.
At issue is Section 67, which says: "Nothing in this Act affects any provision of the Indian Act or any provision made under or pursuant to that Act."
Federal Indian Affairs Minister Jim Prentice, who introduced the changes Wednesday in Parliament, called the section "a block which prevents Canadian First Nations citizens from having the same rights and protections that you and I have."
Repealing the section "without engaging in meaningful consultations with Aboriginal Peoples could only lead to disaster," said Bev Jacobs, president of the Native Women's Association of Canada in a release Wednesday.
If passed, the change is expected to prompt hundreds of discrimination claims.
Transition period ignored, groups say
Phil Fontaine, national chief of the Assembly of First Nations, said human rights must be protected, but Prentice never responded to calls by aboriginal groups for a crucial transition period recommended by the Canadian Human Rights Commission.
"This is simply a recipe for ineffectiveness and will add new costs for First Nations governments already under-resourced," said Fontaine Wednesday in a release.
Prentice told reporters outside question period Wednesday that the government has held "extensive discussions about this for an extensive period and discussions will certainly carry on."
The groups said changing the act might seem like a good idea to non-natives, but they have traditional laws that work and they consider them important as well.
"Our people are fully capable of dealing with these matters themselves," said Katherine Whitecloud, a regional chief of Manitoba.
The following CanWest news story is available online by clicking here
Fontaine joins global lobby on native rights treaty -Steven Edwards, CanWest News Service - Wednesday, December 13, 2006
UNITED NATIONS - Canada's First Nations Chief Phil Fontaine joined indigenous leaders from around the world Tuesday to launch an international campaign aimed at reigniting support for a treaty on native peoples' rights negotiated over 20 years.
He said the new push will focus first on trying to convince African nations to reverse their newly voiced opposition to the draft Canada and other European-colonized countries such as the United States and Australia have also rejected in its present form.
Indigenous groups hope that winning back African support will have a snowball effect that pressures the other countries into changing their positions.
The African caucus stunned the international indigenous community last month when they voted in a key General Assembly policy committee to postpone action on the draft treaty after approving it in the United Nations' Human Rights Council in June.
The document, which calls for international recognition of native peoples' right to self-determination and control over their traditional lands, needs General Assembly endorsement before it can be offered to states for signature and ratification.
"Over the next weeks and months we will be canvassing all member states, starting with the African coalition," said Fontaine, national chief of the Assembly of First Nations.
"We were shocked and disappointed at the recent postponement, and we feel Canada's stance is a stain on its human rights (reputation) internationally."
Canada had been at the forefront of talks that began 20 years ago to create the first comprehensive treaty recognizing rights of native peoples, but withdrew support several months ago amid concern some of the finer print wasn't getting a full hearing.
In a position document, Canada said "parts of the text are vague and ambiguous," setting the stage for competing definitions that could, for example, enable native groups to reopen negotiations on already-settled land claims.
"I don't think anyone is acting in bad faith, rather it's just that countries feel there are some issues that need further discussion," said Fred Caron, assistant deputy minister in the Indian Affairs Department.
UN officials are working to get talks restarted for General Assembly action by next fall.
"It's not clear what can be achieved in nine months when this treaty has been so many years in the making," said Fontaine.
But Caron said much of the current draft had been written in the last year or two after years of deadlock.
"We're aiming for a declaration which advances indigenous rights in a fashion that leads to harmonious relations with the states in which they live," he said.
The document as it stands retains the support of Latin American countries, where indigenous peoples make up a large part of the electorate, and of Europe. But African countries _ which vaguely define their indigenous peoples as those who maintain traditional ways of life _ withdrew their support over the self-determination clauses.
While some African diplomats said their countries feared the provision could spark rebellions, a few indigenous activists charged developed countries such as the United States and Canada had pressured African nations into changing their votes.
NAN press release ...
NAN Supports Wahgoshig's Demand for Recognition of First Nation Child and Family Service
THUNDER BAY, ON, Dec. 12 - Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief Stan Beardy says given the inherent right to self-governance, First Nation child and family service agencies, specifically Timmins based Kunuwanimano, should be recognized as the primary service for First Nations rather than the Government of Ontario's Children's Aid Society (CAS).
"The most recent practice of CAS brings back many memories of the 'Sixties Scoop' not only for those directly involved, but for the community of Wahgoshig and the First Nations of NAN as a whole," said NAN Grand Chief Stan Beardy. "Without proper recognition of First Nation child and family service agencies as the ideal and primary service, First Nations across Ontario will continue to feel victimized as a result of history seeming to repeat itself."
After a public retrieval of an infant by two workers from Timmins and District Children's Aid Society and City Police at a Timmins shopping centre last week, Wahgoshig First Nation (one of NAN's 49 First Nation communities) declared Friday the community is restricting CAS and Ministry of Youth Services from entering the community.
"We are losing our children to a system that does not belong to us," said Wahgoshig First Nation Chief Dave Babin adding this is an issue that must be addressed throughout the North. "Ideally all First Nations should be governed by a First Nation Child and Family Service not a government CAS. If it is a case of a First Nation then it should be handled by a First Nation organization."
Kunuwanimano is a First Nation Child and Family Service Agency serving 11 of NAN's 49 First Nation communities. It operates out of Timmins, Ontario.
The "Sixties Scoop" refers to a period between the 1960s and 1980s where a documented 17,000 First Nation children were taken from their homes to be adopted by non-native families across Canada, United States of America, and Europe. Wahgoshig Chief Babin considers this period an attempt at genocide and is seeking reparation under the Genocide Convention Act (1949), including establishing a national inquiry to investigate policy and period purpose.
Babin says one of his community's objectives is to negotiate with the Ministry of Youth Services, however Wahgoshig First Nation will be closed to them and CAS until Kunuwanimano is designated and CAS adheres to its workplan.
Wahgoshig First Nation together with Kunuwanimano Child and Family Services will host a news conference at the Wahgoshig band office tomorrow.
For further information: Jenna Young, Director of Communications - Nishnawbe Aski Nation, (807) 625-4952; OR Wahgoshig First Nation Chief Dave Babin at (705) 273-2055 or (705) 262-2770
Press Release ...
Northern First Nation Prepares to Stop Operations in Kenogami Forest
Thunder Bay, ON: Chief Sam Kashkeesh announced today that his community of Aroland First Nation is ready to bring a stop to all operations in the Kenogami Forest if the Ministry of Natural Resources and industry continue to shut the First Nation out of discussions regarding the Kenogami Sustainable Forest License (SFL) transfer to Buchanen (Terrace Bay Pulp Inc.) and on going developments within the territory.
Despite continued lobbying and requests from the First Nation since the spring to be included in any forestry planning negotiations affecting the Kenogami territory, the people of Aroland First Nation have been excluded.
“I want to make the position for Aroland First Nation very clear to the public,” says Chief Kashkeesh. “Our First Nation does not want to be disruptive or put increased pressure on the forestry industry within our region. We do not oppose the sale of the Neenah Mill to Buchanan – our families also depend on the forestry industry for their employment and livelihood like other regional municipalities.”
“All we are asking is that we should have been included and consulted with in the awarding process of the Kenogami Forest license. We want to be consulted by the Ministry of Natural Resources. Our people also care about their future job security like all others and while we are being ignored, there are people from out of province now harvesting just one kilometer outside our community. This is not just a matter of respect, mutual prosperity and regional collaboration, but also an issue of legal duty and equality for Aboriginal people in forestry management. The non-cooperation from the government and industry is insulting and in very, very bad taste.”
“We do not want to resort to drastic measures to get the attention and communication we deserve, and we should not have to, continues Chief Kashkeesh. “The level of frustration amongst my people is increasing on a daily basis and as Chief; I am saddened that this government is willing to let these situations get to the boiling point.”
As of today, Aroland First Nation will prepare to take appropriate action within the Kenogami Forest until a process for consultation is forthcoming from the Ministry of Natural Resources.
Aroland First Nation is road accessible and located 482 kilometers Northwest of Thunder Bay, Ontario, north of Geraldton, Ontario. The current population of Aroland First Nation is 507 members. Approximately 352 people live on reserve.
Notes to Editor: Please see attached petition to cease and desist cutting in the Kenogami Forest.
For more information contact: Stephanie AshFiredog Communications: Tel: (807) 767-4443 or email: email@example.com
NAN press release ...
NAN urges safe drinking water implementation process
THUNDER BAY, ON, Dec. 11 /CNW/ - Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief Stan Beardy says without an implementation process, recommendations outlined in the federal safe drinking water report released Friday don't solve the complex problem of water emergencies across NAN territory - an area covering two-thirds of Ontario and home to 49 First Nation communities.
"We knew going into the process of developing this report that the Government of Canada's objectives were only to produce recommendations, however with increasing water emergencies throughout NAN territory what we need now more than ever is an implementation process for clean drinking water on the short and long term," said NAN Grand Chief Stan Beardy. "I look forward to working directly with NAN leadership and Minister Prentice on a priority basis to implement the best options outlined in the report in a way that ensures proper health standards are being met in each community."
Beardy's comments come after Friday's release of a final report from the safe drinking water expert panel which hosted public hearings across the country this past summer.
A representative from NAN presented to this panel in Thunder Bay August 2006. The panel did not visit any First Nation communities in NAN territory.
Currently between 19 and 20 NAN communities are under boil water advisory, including Pikangikum, Attawapiskat, and Marten Falls in the past three months for reasons regarding lack of capacity of water treatment plants, filtration and turbidity levels, contaminated intakes, and traces of carcinogens.
"When nearly half of NAN's communities are on boil water advisories there's something really wrong here," said Beardy. "We need immediate solutions, not 77 pages of text."
Some of the short term solutions include repairs to existing water and sewage treatment plants and proper staffing, training, and certification for community operators.
"Without appropriate staffing resources, including skills training, our communities have to rely on testing and treatments from external operators which can tend to be sporadic," said Beardy.
/For further information: please contact: Jenna Young, Director of Communications - Nishnawbe Aski Nation, (807) 625-4952, or (807) 628-3953 (mobile)/
See the Industry Canada press release after this CBC news story ...
Ottawa accelerates deregulation of local phone service
December 11, 2006 - CBC News
Canada's established phone companies have won their longstanding fight for less regulation of their local phone business — a move the telcos say will benefit consumers.
On Monday, Industry Minister Maxime Bernier gave BCE (Bell Canada), Telus and the country's other incumbent telcos the power to set their own prices, as long as there is sufficient competition in the local area.
Current policy has prevented the big telcos from charging what they want for local phone service.
In a directive released last April, the CRTC declared that deregulation of the local phone business would not be allowed as long as the established phone companies held at least 75 per cent of the market in a particular region. As of 2005, they had 92 per cent of the market nationally.
The broadcast regulator was worried that without a minimum foothold in the marketplace, "new entrant" competitors could be driven out of business by price-cutting incumbents.
But the former phone monopolies have been lobbying for more deregulation for years. They say they've lost hundreds of thousands of customers to rival providers of local phone service — especially the cable companies — who can charge what they want for phone service.
Monday's move throws out the old CRTC threshold policy and further reinforces Bernier's reputation as a minister who favours free-market solutions to telecom issues.
The new proposal "replaces the CRTC's market-share test with one that emphasizes the presence of competitive infrastructure in a given geographical area," a release from Industry Canada said.
60 per cent of Canadians will benefit: Bernier
At a news conference, Bernier estimated that 60 per cent of Canadians, mainly in urban markets, would benefit from the change in policy. In rural areas where there is little competition, it would be "status quo" for now, he said.
"Where consumers have access to telephone service from a traditional telephone service company, a cable company offering telephone service, and at least one unaffiliated wireless provider, deregulation will occur," Bernier said.
Last week, amendments were introduced to the Competition Act designed to "deter anti-competitive behaviour" in deregulated markets.
Telus welcomed the policy change, calling it a "positive development" for consumers and the industry.
"By giving the market more freedom to determine outcomes, we can begin to unleash the full benefits of competition for our customers, and foster enhanced innovation and investment in the Canadian economy," said Darren Entwistle, Telus president and CEO, in a release.
Bell Canada also praised Bernier's announcement, saying it "catches up to market reality."
"He is trying to give consumers more choice and Canada a telecom framework that is internationally competitive — and that is a most welcome development both in terms of the Canadian economy and in terms of Canada's productivity and competitiveness," Michael Sabia, president and CEO of BCE and Bell Canada, said in a release.
In June, Bernier told the CRTC to rely more on market forces and less on regulatory fiat when drafting policy for the phone industry. That followed the March release of a major federal panel report that "Canada should rely primarily on market forces" and a drastic deregulation of the rules that govern the country's phone, cable TV and internet services.
Last month, Bernier also overruled the CRTC on the regulation of internet phone service (VoIP), saying there is no reason to regulate some telephone services offered through broadband internet connections.
Industry Canada press release ...
Canada's New Government Proposes to Accelerate Deregulation of Local Telephone Service in the Interests of Canadian Consumers
OTTAWA, December 11, 2006 -- The Honourable Maxime Bernier, Minister of Industry, today announced a government proposal to change a decision by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) that would put in place a revised framework to determine when to deregulate retail telephone prices of the former monopoly telephone companies.
"Canada's new government has an ambitious policy agenda for the telecommunications sector, the essence of which is a new regulatory framework that is more modern, flexible and efficient," said Minister Bernier. "The government's proposal is intended to stimulate competition and innovation among local telephone service providers so that Canadian consumers and businesses will benefit from even more choice, improved products and services, and lower prices."
In June of this year, Minister Bernier tabled a proposed policy direction to the CRTC, signalling the government's intention to direct the CRTC to rely on market forces to the maximum extent feasible under the Telecommunications Act and regulate only when necessary.
Earlier this year, the CRTC issued Telecom Decision CRTC 2006-15 (Forbearance from the regulation of retail local exchange services), which laid out a framework for price deregulation of local telephone service provided by traditional telephone companies. Minister Bernier consulted and reviewed this decision, and will now propose to replace the CRTC's market-share test with one that emphasizes the presence of competitive infrastructure in a given geographical area.
The proposed variance is linked to proposed amendments to the Competition Act that would establish financial penalties to deter anti-competitive behaviour in deregulated telecommunications markets, which were introduced by the Minister in Parliament on December 7, 2006.
"This initiative reflects our agreement with the advice we've received from the Telecom Policy Review Panel to rely on market forces to the maximum extent feasible," said Minister Bernier. "This is another step towards our goal of reshaping telecommunications policy so that it supports an internationally competitive and robust telecommunications industry here in Canada."
For more information, please contact:
Office of the Honourable Maxime Bernier
Minister of Industry
Wawakapewin Press Release
We announce with great sadness of the sudden passing of one of our community members. Sheila Childforever age 54 passed away on December 7, 2006 at the Sioux Lookout Menoyawin Health Centre at the 7th Avenue site.
Sheila was a former Chief for Wawakapewin First Nation from February 1998 - March 2005. She leaves behind her partner, Roger Cook, children, Anne Marie (Beardy), Cherilyn (Beardy), Troy, Shawn, Melissa and Vanessa Childforever, and numerous grandchildren.
Viewing and Memorial Services will be at the Sioux Lookout Funeral Home, 128 Front Street on Wednesday December, 13, 2006 at 10:30 - 12:00 p.m. Funeral will be in her home community of Wawakapewin on Thursday December 14, 2006 at 1:00 p.m. at the St. John the Devine Anglican church with Rev. Stewart Nanokeesic officiating. Internment will follow after the services at the Wawakapewin Cemetary.
For information, please contact the following:
Noreen Meekis (Sioux Lookout)
Tel: (807) 737-2662, ext. 268
Cell: (807) 737-0980
Fax: (807) 737-4226
Barry Frogg (Wawakapewin)
Tel: (807) 442-2567
Fax: (807) 442-1162
NAAF press release ...
Recipients Announced for 2007 National Aboriginal Achievement Awards
TORONTO-- (Dec. 10, 2006) - Fourteen outstanding achievers have been named as recipients of the 2007 Aboriginal Achievement Awards. They include the CEO of Canada's winning 2010 Olympic bid, the producer of one of Canada's longest-running TV series, a world-class diver and 11 other First Nations, Métis, and Inuit role models who converted their potential into success.
"The 2007 award winners are an amazing celebration of achievement," said Roberta Jamieson, CEO of the National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation. "We invite all Canadians to join us in recognizing these outstanding persons who have contributed so much to Canada and the world. The awards will be presented at a gala event in Edmonton next March and will be televised on both Global and APTN."
The Foundation is delighted that Adam Beach, most recently seen in Flags of Our Fathers, will host the awards while Jennifer Podemski - prominent producer, actor and writer is the Creative Producer.
Juno award winners, Gemini-nominated actors, and a slate of talent that reads like the who's who of Aboriginal Canadian entertainers will honour the recipients with performances at the 14th Annual National Aboriginal Achievement Awards on March 16, 2007 in Edmonton at the Northern Alberta Jubilee Auditorium.
The recipients and their categories for the 14th annual National Aboriginal Achievement Awards are:
Joanne Cardinal Schubert - Arts
…. a writer, curator, lecturer, poet and Aboriginal arts activist, Cardinal-Schubert inspires and enables Native artists across the continent to challenge and reclaim their creative identities.
Jack Poole - Business and Commerce
…. is credited with bringing the 2010 Olympics to Canada and it's little surprise Poole's been called a cautious optimist, a visionary and a modest overachiever, it's what helped shape him into becoming one of the most successful real estate developers and community builders in North America.
Andre Alestine - Cultural, Heritage and Spirituality
…. a Heritage Researcher for her community she successfully combines her gifts of Gwich'in traditional knowledge with that of Western Science.
Joe Michel - Education
…. one of the most outspoken advocates and leaders on Aboriginal education in the country. Michel has gone on to develop curriculum for linguistic courses in universities and played a major role in reviving the near extinct Secwepemc language back into the schools.
Chief David Walkem - Environment
…. builds communication bridges with developers and forestry companies that allow Aboriginal people to benefit from the business of forestry but also allow the land to regenerate and renew.
Joe Couture - Health
…. as the first Aboriginal person to receive a PhD in psychology, Dr. Joe as he is affectionately known, has not only built bridges of understanding between two cultures but has systematically affected generations of educators and students with his straightforward and profound traditional healing methods
Hugh Braker - Law and Justice
.... the first Nu Cha Nulth lawyer in the country, has been the Director of Self Government for the Assembly of First Nations, and is renowned for his work on Aboriginal child welfare law and protecting Aboriginal children.
Bertha Clark Jones - Lifetime Achievement
…. always spoke out for the underdog and moved women's rights groups forward by strides when she founded the Alberta Native Women's Voices in the late 1960s. That organization blossomed to become the Native Women's Association of Canada, a powerful voice for Native women in the country.
Lisa Meeches - Media and Communications
.... helped lead Aboriginal media into the mainstream by exposing the 'truth', Meeches buries old prejudices and opens minds with her meaningful and traditional-based approach to television production.
Freddie Carmichael - Politics
… currently a second-term President of the Gwich'in Tribal Council piloting the direction for a successful cultural and socio-economic future which includes building a foundation for self-government.
Lewis Cardinal - Public Service
…. is designing education systems that integrate traditional knowledge, and is involved on an international level in a global forum where the world's Indigenous peoples meet to share, discuss and participate in building a more sustainable future for everyone.
…. a champion diver who began a diving career at age 12, Gorup-Paul is stirring up the waters in world competitive diving. He's traveled the globe competing against the sports' top divers in the Pan Am Games, the Commonwealth Games and even the South African National Championships.
Monica Peters - Technology and Trades
…. Indigenous languages are at risk. … By combining modern technology with ancient words she built an instrument that not only gave her identity but has the potential to save threatened languages of the world.
James Makokis - Youth
… his love for his community and his desire to learn the wisdom of his ancestors that drives his passion. …It's his unique ability to share what he's learned through nationally syndicated columns, programming university research projects and combining his family's wisdom with that of his ongoing quest to further his knowledge.
The recipients are selected by a national jury comprised of past award recipients and individuals representing First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples from diverse geographic regions of Canada and areas of the economy.
The awards are produced by the National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation, Canada's leading Aboriginal charity dedicated to providing financial assistance to Aboriginal students for post-secondary education. Since 1985, the Foundation has awarded more than $22 million in scholarships to deserving students across the country for all disciplines, including law, medicine, education, psychology, fine arts, business, and computer sciences.
The National Aboriginal Achievement Awards are generously supported by:
Lead Sponsor - CIBC
Air Canada, Alliance Pipeline, BP Canada Energy Company, Casino Rama, CN, Diavik Diamond Mines, Enbridge, Encana, First Air, IBM Canada, Investors Group, Nexen Inc., Petro -Canada, RBC Foundation, Scotiabank, Shell Canada Ltd., Suncor Energy Foundation, Syncrude Canada Ltd., Talisman Energy
The Government of Canada - Indian and Northern Affairs Canada, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Canadian Forces, Canadian Heritage, Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation, Canadian Museum of Civilization, Elections Canada, Environment Canada, Industry Canada - Aboriginal Business Canada, Health Canada, Service Canada, Transport Canada
For more information please contact
Kim Ziervogel at K'Image Communications at 780.490.6762 or 780.231.1873
Or Scott Cavan, Dir. Communications, NAAF at 416.926.0775 ext. 237 or 416.903.4331 (cell), Toll-Free: 800-329-9780, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org