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Gitksan feast of artistic excellence

The performing arts is one of the most highly respected art forms. Dance and songs have been presented since the ancients gathered around their fires at night. Through many millenniums this art form has been used to give form to collective spirituality and the creative genius of sentient beings.
A Gitksan family has put together an amazing festival featuring the rich legacy of their homeland. Through song, dance, stories and visual art the audiences are captivated by a culture that spans thousands of years.

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Artist Speak with David Neel
Fine art jewelry artist David Neel enjoys the endless creative opportunities inspired by his Kwagiutl ancestors. As a designer he discusses with clients what symbol they would like to see on their jewelry. His art helps people to mark important parts of their life such as relationships, birth, death, victory and even overcoming an illness.
Marissa Nahanee had a kidney transplant on August 8, 2011 thanks to the generous organ donation from her mother (Delhia Nahanee). To celebrate the occasion they asked Neel to create a special set of rings for them. Neel was asked to cut out a kidney shape from Delhias ring and attach it to Marissas ring. The result was very satisfying for everyone. David Neel is a Native jewellery designer with over 20 years professional experience. He works with gold, silver, platinum and precious stones to create pieces that reflect the rich cultural heritage of his people, the Kwagiutl of Vancouver Island, Canada. A hereditary artist, he follows in the footsteps of his family, who are some of the leading figures in Northwest coast Native art. This includes; Dave Neel Sr., his father, Ellen Neel, his grandmother, Mungo Martin, his greatgreat uncle, and Charlie James, his great-great-great grandfather. Peers from his fathers village taught him in the traditional way He then .

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Summer 2012

By Latash -Maurice Nahanee


went on to establish a contemporary style that incorporates the legends and teachings of his people. Starting with gold and silver, he skillfully transforms the ancient stories into unique and powerful pieces of jewellery . Throughout his career he has worked in a number of media, including: woodcarving, photography, painting and printmaking. He is the author of two books on Native culture, and is currently working on a third book. He has had dozens of exhibitions in museums and art galleries, and is represented in numerous public collections. Neel has studied art from many countries. His vast knowledge of art is the result of research that began in high school. He
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Ashley Callingbull
talks success with Maurice and Marissa Nahanee In 2010, Ashley Callingbull became the first Aboriginal woman to win the Miss Canada pageant. Since then gorgeous brunette Cree women has gone onto further success and fame as an international model and actor. She is currently starring in Blackstone, a TV drama series portraying First Nations community life.
Ashley Callingbull is a 22-year-old student enrolled at Concordia University in Edmonton, Alberta where she is working towards her Bachelor of Art degree in Drama. Born and raised in Enoch, Alberta, Ashley has lived there most of her life. She is very proud to be Cree and is devoted to her culture and people. She has demonstrated this through her work with community elders and children. The loss of some very close family members have led her to spend a lot of time helping out at hospitals, and charities throughout Alberta, including the Stollery Childrens Hospital, Walk for the Cure, and Run
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David Neel oil painting of a mask by master carver, Charlie James.

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A community united under one roof


Vancity invests in Aboriginal communities to achieve economic strength and independence. Learn more www.vancity.com/aboriginalcommunities
Goods and Services Tax to create a revenue stream for the loan. The building itself, which will cover 4,983 square feet, has been architecturally designed to complement the surrounding landscape and is certified to be a LEED green building. This facility will indeed be a hub for Songhees community by bringing together over seven departments of the Nation including an administration wing, (which houses governance, finance, archaeology, fine arts, taxation, treaty, and bylaw enforcement), an education centre, and a health wing, including a fullsize gym. Christina says, It has been difficult to have a holistic approach or provide holistic care to members without access to multiple services in the same location. The centre will be ideal for bringing all levels together and providing a space for elders and youth to interact, which has not been easily realized until now. There has not been a space for elders or youth and programs are divided among temporary offices. The Songhees are operating their The Songhees made a goal over a decade ago to create a space that would serve every generation of their community, and would also contribute to Victorias greater community In 1995 the First . Nation entered a community engagement process that asked its members what they would like to envision for their members if there were no barriers; this is when the idea of a wellness centre started to grow. The Nation had a vision of a centre that could accommodate all their people while overcoming the challenge of having many needs and very little land. The Songhees collectively came up with the concept of a multi-purpose building that could bring many programs under one roof. Today, with Vancitys assistance with a construction loan for $18 million, the Songhees Wellness Centre Project is well underway . The Songhees are the first First Nation government to receive a financial performance certificate under the Fiscal and Statistical Management Act, which allows Nations to leverage property taxes and other revenues to finance infrastructure projects This act was designed to address the issues of not having fee simple land on Reserves and offering a presentday solution, while the First Nation can still seek a treaty with federal government. The result of this act in British Columbia is that Nations can now be treated similar to a municipality, if financial institutions choose to lend to them. Based on this premise, Vancity has chosen to treat Songhees similar to a municipality to provide this construction loan to the Songhees Wellness Centre Project. Christina Clarke, the Songhees Property Tax Administrator, who has been with the Songhees Nation for sixteen years says, Vancity was the frontrunner in exploring the idea and is being very forward-thinking with this dealthere were other banks that wouldnt consider a long enough amortization or that were not comfortable without a real estate asset as collateral. Vancity has been considering for a number of years lending to First Nations for community projects on Reserves without the security of physical assets. It was about five years ago that Stewart Anderson, Vancitys Community Investment Manager who oversees Aboriginal banking, and some of his colleagues started talks with the Songhees Nation about creating this space that will be the heart of the community The . financing of the Wellness Centre is the first time Vancity has put the idea of using tax revenue into practice. Songhees Nation has implemented the First Nations band office and services out of an old day school building from 1911, and some mobile offices. In September 2011, ground was broken for the construction of the new Wellness Centre. The design of the new facility has actively included input from Songhees members and will highlight cultural education by hosting many pieces of traditional art, act as a Songhees cultural centre, (displaying significant objects and historical pieces), which will also make it a cultural tourist
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Photo: Clarence (Butch) Dick Senior guides the work of Clarence Dick Junior when carving one of the welcome poles for the Songhees Wellness Centre.

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attraction, including a gift shop, as well as a place for members to experience and learn more about their own history . Looking at the Greater Victoria community the Songhees also realized the Wellness Centre could serve as a convention centre, as Victoria does not presently have a medium-sized convention centre. With its full-size gym, convention abilities and an industrial kitchen for food production, these facilities may help fund the building itself. Christina Clarke emphasizes that as a nation, We are doing this so our members have opportunities. Christina also mentions that there is no Aboriginal venue close to the city of Victoria, the capital of BC, so the Wellness Centre will fill that space while providing a gathering place for members to have fun and access the services the Nation provides. The centre itself is scheduled to be completed and fully operational by fall 2013. Read how Vancity is supporting Aboriginal communities www.vancity .com/stories.

Noted actor Gordon Ashley has done a lot of You have a very successful Tootosis was Ashleys voice over work in different career in modeling. What uncle. He starred in languages, been in multiple are some of your experiseason one. Sadly he , TV series and done countences as a model? passed away in 2012. less musicals. Ashley Ashley Callingbull is also currently finished filming What were some of the most the first Aboriginal woman Season 2 of the television difficult challenges in life to hold a Miss Canada. that you faced. How did you She won the competition I plan to continue my educa- series Blackstone. One of her possible means of overcome these challenges? in 2010. Part of her reign tion because a lot of jobs getting to do what she really was to represent Canada require you to have two My childhood was the worst. wants is through acting and at International Pageants degrees. It so important to I lived through tragedy I . modeling, both life long around the world while have an education, I love to was sexually and physically , passions. She has trained raising awareness for her act, but it is always good to abused. I lost a lot of family in stage combat, musical Ashley is also a motivational have a back up plan. Life is charities. She was also the members. I felt unapprecispeaker and travels interna- demanding and you need to theatre and other theatrical 2nd Runner Up in the Miss ated. My grandparents are arts. Her Special Skills tionally to work with youth. have a degree or two. Universe Canada pageant. very traditional; I embraced include: 10 yrs competitive She has spoken at numerous it with open arms. I felt that Ashley is considering a Runway Experience:- BC Ballet, Tap, Jazz and Pointe, Elementary, Junior and was therapy for me. Another Bachelor of Arts degree Fashion Week - Vancouver 10 yrs competitive Native Senior high schools, as well therapy is acting; I can in Communications as her Fashion Week - Western Jingle Dancing, five years in as Harvard University and express different emotions second degree. She has also Equestrian; and is fluent in Canada Fashion Week TED Talks. through these characters. taken training and gained - Vancouver, British Spanish, English and Cree. Columbia Shows - Cherrie experience in theatre arts. There are people with Cruz - Jessica Halabi similar backgrounds, some Kelly Madden, and - Michael gave up, why didnt you? Kaye, New York. I have learned a lot and She worked in: Germany , that has made me deterEurope, Mexico, Asia, mined. I didnt have much Twenty-eight years ago Sandy Sundar moved from Caribbean, United States growing up. Everything I Fiji Islands, in the South Pacific to start her new life in and Canada. have, I worked for. I would Vancouver. not change anything, it Ashley, you have also has made me who I am. enjoyed great success as an In Fiji, she was a school teacher and was assigned to teach actress. One of your roles is Its important to grow up in a Fijian Native school where the Native children from the in the TV series Blackstone. through hard times. outer islands came to study. Why did you choose this Ashley believes we are all role? Do you see Indigenous incredibly lucky to be here The experience that she gained from the Fijians has helped communities experiencing her understand First Nations culture in Canada. and wants to make some the dramas faced by the kind of positive impact on These cultures are very similar where you pay respect to SANDY SUNDAR, characters in Blackstone? the world. for the Lung. Because of Ashleys outstanding efforts, she received the Role Model Award at the Dreamcatcher Gala in June 2011. Her vision is to work with underprivileged children. Ashley is using her talents in acting, dancing and singing as a tool for teaching and mentoring First Nations children. Your passion for acting led you to studying drama at university How valuable is . the university experience to you. How does your studies help you in developing your career?

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When I found out about the Do you have some advice audition, I read the script, for youth? something about it seemed really raw. First thing in my Her advice for younger youth is to not live in fear head was, is this the new because once you get there North of 60? In Blackstone, it traps you there. the plot has thickened, it deals with a lot more issues. I had to work hard. It is very controversial. It The number one rule surpassed my expectation. I I have is, to love my am very proud to be a part self. Once I did learn of it. Im glad that it talks to love myself, I felt about what most people do stronger and more not want to talk about. powerful.

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Summer 2012

Editorial By Latash - Maurice Nahanee and Marissa Nahanee


The Indigenous people of Canada occupy a paradox within the context of Canada. It is an absurdity that is shared by other Aboriginal peoples in such diverse places as New Zealand, Australia, South and Central America and the United States. Even though these areas of the world have tremendous advantages in terms of natural resources the Indigenous people are uniquely marginalized in the distribution of the economic wealth of most countries. Aboriginal people suffer in the area of health. Study after study show that there needs to be a great shift in improving the quality of health among Aboriginal people. But, Aboriginal people are not the only people to suffer from poor health. Anyone caught in the same health determinants are also at risk. The social determinants of health are the conditions in which people are born, grow, live, work and age, including the health system. These circumstances are shaped by the distribution of money, power and resources at global, national and local levels, which are influenced by policy choices. The social determinants of health are mostly responsible for health inequities - the unfair and avoidable differences in health status seen within and between countries. For the past century statistics upon statistics show that Aboriginal people living in Indian reservations are at grave risk of suffering from poor health. Inadequate housing, lack of educational and employment opportunities, shortages of healthy food are among the disadvantages Indigenous people are born into. There was a time when there was abundance for Aboriginal people. Why else would they live where they are? The Indigenous people enjoyed the bounty of a generous Higher Power. They were thankful for the opportunity to live in a land of plenty The presence . of the Great Spirit led to a philosophy of respect for all things including people, animals, plants and inanimate objects. The invasion of the world by European powers led to catastrophic results for the Indigenous peoples. It is not that anyone is perfect, but in the area of health and well-being it is the

The 1996 Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples made a number of recommendations, virtually all of which have not been implemented.
Recognition of an Aboriginal order of government with authority over matters related to the good government and welfare of Aboriginal peoples and their territories. Replacement of the federal Department of Indian Affairs with two departments, one to implement a new relationship with Aboriginal nations and one to provide services for nonself-governing communities. Creation of an Aboriginal Parliament. Initiatives to address social, education, health, and housing needs, including the training of 10,000 health profes-sionals over a 10-year period, the establishment of an Aboriginal peoples university and recognition , of Aboriginal nations authority over child welfare.
of the health determinants remains largely unchanged.

higher in the Aboriginal UN General Assembly in population than the non2007, identifies numerous Aboriginal Canadian areas in which national Education levels differ population. Suicide is also governments could work This information is based widely between Aboriginal high among Indigenous to improve the situation of on decades of research and other Canadians. peoples. Aboriginal peoples Aboriginal peoples, however and hundreds of studies in Among First Nation people have high rates of major Canada did not sign until Canada and elsewhere. living on reserve, 40% of depression (18%), problems November 2010. The men and 43% of women Our health is also deterDeclaration include articles attain high school education. with alcohol (27%), and mined by the health and experience of sexual abuse concerned with improving The figures are better for social services we receive, during childhood (34%). economic and social condiFirst Nation people living and our ability to obtain Using the United Nations tions, the right to attain off-reserve; 56% for men and quality education, food Human Development the highest levels of health, 57% for women. Figures for and housing, among other Index consisting of life and the right to protect and factors. And contrary to the Inuit peoples are 43% for expectancy education, and , conserve their environassumption that Canadians both men and women and for economic well-being the ments. Canada was one Mtis, 65% for men and 63% have personal control over Canadian Aboriginal of four nations (Australia, these factors, in most cases for women. But these figures population ranks 33 among Canada, New Zealand, and compare unfavourably to these living conditions are nations. Canada itself has the USA) to vote against its non-Aboriginal Canadians imposed upon us by the a rank of eight. The United adoption. One hundred and quality of the communities, where 71% of men and 70% forty three nations voted in of women attain high school Nations Declaration of housing situations, work the Rights of Indigenous favour of the Declaration. education. settings, health and social Peoples, approved by the service agencies, and educa- Aboriginal Canadians tional institutions. living off reserve are four times more likely to experiImproving the health of ence food insecurity than Canadians requires we non-Aboriginal Canadians. think about health and its Thirty-three per- cent of determinants in a more off-reserve Aboriginal housesophisticated manner than holds experienced moderate 1. Income and Income Distribution has been the case to date. or severe food insecurity in 2. Education For many of us, we are born 2004 as compared to 8.8% 3. Unemployment and Job Security into adverse conditions. of non-Aboriginal house4. Employment and Working Conditions holds. Fourteen percent Aboriginal peoples in 5. Early Childhood Development of Aboriginal households Canada First Nations, 6. Food Insecurity experienced severe food Dene, Mtis, and Inuit 7. Housing insecurity as compared to number 1.2 million and 8. Social Exclusion 2.7% of non-Aboriginal constitute 3.8% of the households. On-reserve food Canadian population. 9. Social Safety Network is equally insecure. The health of Aboriginal 10. Health Services peoples in Canada is tightly Aboriginal peoples are four 11. Aboriginal Status woven with their history of times more likely to be 12. Gender colonialization. This has living in crowded housing 13. Race taken the form of legislathan non-Aboriginal 14. Disability tion such as the Indian Canadians. Life expectanAct of 1876, disregard for cies of Aboriginal peoples land claims, relocation of are five to 14 years less Inuit communities, and the than the Canadian populaestablishment of residential tion, with Inuit men and schools. The result has been women showing the shortest SEVEN is published four times a year adverse social determinants lives. Infant mortality of health and adverse health rates are 1.5 to four times featuring stories on Indigenous art, culture, outcomes. The following entertainment and news. greater among Aboriginal statistics were compiled Make cheque payable to: Canadians than the overall just over ten years ago but Canadian rate. Rates of SEVEN - Your Indigenous News Source. there has been no great leap numerous infectious and 443 W. 3rd St. North Vancouver, BC, V7M1G6 forward. The status quo chronic diseases are much

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Walking at the Edge of Water with Rulan Tangen


Walking at the Edge of Water, is Rulan Tangens tribute and affirmation of the sacredness of water. Water is one of the most valuable resources on earth. Without fresh water people cannot survive. And for many people it is a connection to the Higher Power.
Indigenous grandmothers and women have been placing into my hands the request to create a dance work that expresses the profound need for people to remember the sacredness of water - and of women, and to cleanse and heal the waters of the planet, and the waters within. The threats to water are crucial across the globe. Paraphrasing Josephine Mandawin: What you going to do about it? My response comes through movement; dance is how I learn the most about the world and about myself, and invoke transformation. Stories are pouring in: of icons of Chac and Tlaloc, creation stories of clouds merging and of emergence from waters, as well as reports of salmon loss, hydro-fracking (dangerous explosions used to assist in the harvesting of oil), coal and uranium mining causing devastating illnesses and poisoning. Europe, Mexico, and South America as a choreographer, performer, teacher, and lecturer. She developes theater, film , site specific commissions, dance training programs , wellness workshops, and cultural exchange projects that bring dance to serve as functional ritual for personal, social, and environmental health and harmony . Tangen is an internationally regarded dance artist: choreographer in film/ theater/outdoor and site specific venues; instructor (several movement forms); lecturer; published writer; dancer/performance artist; actress; dance company founder - with three decades of experience in study of movement arts, performing, producing, and live performance. In 2010, she was invited by Stanford Universitys institute of Diversity in the Arts to lead a semester project titled Race And Environment. Her choreography has been commissioned by venues including the Heard Museum, Santa Fe Art Institute, Society for Dance Historians, Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics, Teatro Nunes in Brasil, Centro Cultural de Recoleto Argentino, Native Roots and Rhythms Festival, Santa Fe Dance Festival, Native Cinema Showcase at the Center for Contemporary Arts, Idyllwild Arts Program, Living Rituals World Indigenous Dance Festival, Toronto Harbourfronts Roots Remix Festival, Aqua Caliente Cultural Museum, the International Aboriginal Choreographers Workshop, and the films APOCALYPTO ( director Mel Gibson) and THE NEW WORLD ( director Terrence Malick).

Rulan Tangen in Flight. Photo by Paulo Tavares.

I carry these in my bowl of experience, and begin this movement of exploration in the drought of high desert New Mexico. It seems to parallel an inner landscape that seeks healing and restoration of the archetypal feminine, and of the sicknesses that are being battled by many women warriors, says Tangen.

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Her three decades of performance credits include ballet and modern dance companies in New York (Michael Mao Dance and Peridance), Vancouver (Karen Jamieson Dance), Santa Fe (Moving Tangen believes contempoPeople, Dancing One Soul) rary dance is continuing the and California (Marin Ballet link of culture from ancient and Redwood Empire Ballet), to futuristic, and this and appearances with the culminates in her vision One Railroad Circus. As for DANCING EARTH well as extensive yoga Indigenous Contemporary training, and powwow trail Dance Creations, for which experiences as a Northern she is choreographer and Plains traditional womens director. dancer. www.dancingearth.org

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Rulan Tangens, lifetime passion for dance includes working internationally in the US, Canada,

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Haida Language
That which makes us The exhibition will run Haida: the Haida Language from March 29 through exhibit opened at the Bill September 9, 2012 at the Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Reid Gallery in Vancouver. Coast Art Thursday, March As unique as the land and 29, 2012. This exhibiwater that gave birth to tion documents the last it, Xaayda kil / Xaad kil is remaining fluent speakers not just a language, it is a of the Haida language different way of thinking. It and explores the three is Haida knowledge, history remaining dialects found and wisdom stored. It in Alaska, Old Massett and defines our intrinsic relaSkidegate through portraits tionship to the lands, waters, taken by Vancouver-based airways and supernatural photographer Farah Nosh beings of Haida Gwaii; that over the last eight years which makes us Haida, and interviews withthe last said Co-currator Jisgang, fluent speakers in these Nika Collison. communities. Farah Nosh began photoThese men and women graphing these Elders (the youngest is now 65 in 2004; the Haida Gwaii years old) who grew up Museum began working with active, fluent speakers towards this exhibition in in their homes, are dedi2006. Jisgang, Nika Collison cating their time to save says, It breaks our hearts this linguistic isolate from to say that many fluent extinction by teaching in speakers have passed away schools, creating a written since this project began. orthography and orally Some left this world before documenting all the vocabu- they were interviewed or lary they know. They speak photographed; in these of how the language has cases, photos and/or influenced their relationpersonal histories were ship to the land and the sea, provided by their families and shaped their ability to and friends. feel and understand their As the Elders shared their relationship to the earth stories and we explored and all beings through our Haida history, the true respect for all things. impact of Canadas assimiOriginated and presented by lation policies became a the Haida Gwaii Museum hellish reality, not just an at Kay Llnagaay and seven intellectual understanding years in the making, this of the past. Its been an exhibition honours the emotional ride. I dont Haida language and the last think Ive ever cried more, fluent speakers who have or at times laughed harder. dedicated their lives to its Ultimately its been hard not survival. Curated by Haida to let the grief and anger speakers Jusquan, Amanda take over. But, like Jusquan, Bedard and Jisgang, Nika I feel privileged to learn and Collison in collaboration understand how precious with the language programs Xaayda kil truly is, and what of Alaska and Haida Gwaii, it means to me as a Haida. the exhibition aims to We cannot let it die, and this inspire critical thinking is where I must focus my around what a language is, energy, said Collison. what it means to a people, and why Haida people must Because of the sheer determination of these keep their language alive. fluent teachers and their dedicated students, I believe these Elders will not be the last generation of fluent speakers. Nor will they be the last generation to grow up with Haida as their first language, or the last generation to be raised almost entirely on the lands and waters of Haida Gwaii. Xaayda kil: the language of our Ancestors and Elders, the understanding of who we are and how we nt into this world, is right on the edge. This exhibition and book tell the story of the struggles and honours, the hard work and dedication; that which will keep our language alive. Ad dalang sding, Dalang waadluuxan Ga hll kil laa. Haawa. Co-curratorJusquan, Amanda Bedard says, I am privileged to fully realize what Xaad kil means to
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Primrose Adams. Photo by Farah Nosh.

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Stephen Brown. Photo by Farah Nosh.

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(Damelahamid Dancers continued from page 1)

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witnessed the banning of the Potlatch and lived to see the culture revived in the 1960s when this family established the Dancers of Damelahamid. Irene taught the ancient dance traditions to her son Ken Harris who upheld these traditions throughout his lifetime. In 1987, the group moved for the first time from the area of Damelahamid, along the Skeena River to Vancouver, BC. Ken Harriss daughter Margaret is the leader of the family dance group.
Dancing in Chilkat Blankets.

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The Coastal First Nations Dance Festival is a celebration of the stories, songs, and dances of the Indigenous peoples of the northwest coast of North America. Produced and presented annually by Dancers of Damelahamid, the festival transforms the UBC Museum of Anthropologys Great Hall into a celebration of Indigenous cultures and dance traditions. Dancers of Damelahamid is a professional Aboriginal dance company from the northwest coast of British Columbia. The Gitksan, people of the river of mists, are part of the coastal group of cultures that have the distinctive button blanket regalia. Through dramatic dance, captivating narrative by Margaret Grenier, intricately carved masks and elaborate regalia they transform time and space, and bridge the ancient with a living tradition. Grenier is a raconteur. Her soulful voice could be that of her ancestors or those who are yet to come.

Chief Kenneth Harris (19282010) was holder of Simoiget Hagbegwatku and his title translates as the first born of our nation. He served on the advisory committee to Prime Minister Trudeau that resisted the infamous White Paper of 1969. His 1972 book Visitors who Never Left: The origin of the people of Damelahamid was published by UBC Press and remains today a wealth of knowledge for the younger generations of his lineage. Originally trained in the RCAF he was a Captain in the army reserves for 30 years. He was an Elder and consultant for numerous First Nations The Dancers of Damelaorganizations such as the hamid have gained a United Native Nations, the national reputation as one Institute for Indigenous of the finest northwest Governance, the University coastal dance groups in of British Columbia and British Columbia. was the Vancouver site Since 2004, under the leader- coordinator for the Royal ship of Margaret Grenier, Commission on Aboriginal the group has become a Peoples. professional dance company Elder Margaret Harris is a that has self produced respected Cree Elder from several theatre productions. Excellence is achieved northern Manitoba who has lived in Prince Rupert and through collaboration of Vancouver throughout her artistry with guest dance artists, sound designers and adult life. Her mother-inlaw, Matriarch Irene Harris, graphic artists. trained her in the traditions The Coastal First Nations of the Gitksan. Starting in Dance Festival was held Prince Rupert she founded at the UBC Museum of the We yah hani nah Coastal Anthropology March 8-11, First Nations Dance Festival 2012. The Festival is a that was instrumental in showcase the diverse and reviving First Nations rich cultural traditions culture in northwestern practiced by a selection British Columbia. Her of some of the best dance 40 years of experience groups from coastal British teaching Cree and Gitksan Columbia, the Yukon, and dance and her wealth of Alaska. Featured special traditional knowledge guest artists included: Hoop and wisdom is invaluable Dancer Jessica McMann in guiding the Dancers of from Winnipeg and Robert Damelahamid. Bamblett, an Aboriginal The Dancers of dancer from Melbourne, Damelahamid have Australia. reached thousands of According to Gitksan history, students through their Damelahamid is the original school outreach programcity where the first Gitksan ming. Their school touring ancestors were put on earth production Dancing Our from heaven. The dance Stories provides a fun and group is named after this engaging way for young city Since time immemorial audiences to learn about the . Gitksan songs have been traditions of the Gitxsan performed in the feast hall and Cree Nations. The and played an integral part performance also includes in defining art and culture. audience participation Irene Harris was the last in followed by a Q&A for their lineage to experience students with the artists. a traditional upbringing This production has easy within the feast system. She set-up for school gyms and

auditoriums and includes a northwest coastal designed backdrop and portable sound system. The Dancers of Damelahamid are part of ArtStarts

in Schools. ArtStarts is a BC wide program that presents artists in schools to promote the arts. Presenting through school programming also is a strong part of the companys role in inspiring

and creating cross cultural dialogue with young audiences which will support their ability and mandate to influence social change through art.

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Nahanees Text
When did education begin? asks Keamo Wasabe. It is always a loaded question when he starts a conversation with a question like that. My friend and raconteur sometimes ponders the larger questions in life. In a lifetime spent attending ceremonies and Indigenous gatherings he has figured out that the public education system has some serious inherent flaws. But then again he asks, what is the alternative.

By Latash -Maurice Nahanee

One Fire Dance Group

I imagine education started when the first Europeans arrived. They have a long history of schools, I reply in a clumsy, almost ignorant way No, I think maybe educa. tion started a long time before that. Well, yeah, I mean we all had to learn something before colonization. Our people were self-sufficient. They had pride. They felt secure in living with peers who shared a similar worldview. They not only had respect for all things, but that is how they lived. They walked the walk, I said. Well, as you know, Latash, Im not that deep. I was just askin a question. Like, you know, making conversation. Wasabe says that when we talk about the current state of Indigenous education we have to examine this topic in the context of the colonial era. What was education before the epoch of colonization, during the colonial period and what will it be like in the eras yet to come. You mean like the ghosts of Christmas past and present, says I. As usual, you are on the same page, in your own way, Wasabe jibes. In pre-colonial America and in most places on Mother Earth the teachings and worldview of the community are passed on directly through interactions between the several generations in the village. Over time, the inherent gifts of the child evolved through trial and error until a young person became proficient and professional. Simply put, a child may have the attributes and skills of a hunter. And this would become his profession after years of training and practice. We can think of the many skills needed for survival and coping with abundance. It was an education system that offered nurturing. It relied on reward and acknowledgement rather than punishment for mistakes. Colonial times offered a dark chapter. In place of a loving nurturing environment, children were subject to a system that attacked all the values of the childs heritage. The government and schools said they were offering something better. As altruistic as this seems, the words were merely a veil for disposessing of the Indigenous people of their culture, identity and their resources. The people went from being masters in their territories to orphans. We have moved quickly through time. Not all that has been said is safe from exceptions to the rule. There has been good and bad. However, let us say that the public education has been by and large a failure. Many good people have provided insightful answers to helping Indigenous children achieve more success in public schools. We are always in the future according to Wasabe. Whoa Bucky, now you are scaring me. I am willing to bet there were people living here 10,000 years ago. We are living in their future. said Wasabe. Strangely enough, I think my companion and muse is right. For the past 15 years I have worked in the public school system. I arrived in this profession in a fortunate way . Some sage decided that Indigenous students needed some help academically and culturally I was hired to develop . and provide cultural programs. I am still amazed at the support given to Aboriginal children in public schools. One of the goals I was hired to help achieve was to instill pride in the Aboriginal children. To help them realize theyre self worth and the value of their ancestors. Administrators, teachers, counselors, support staff, elders and parents were all involved in offering a vision of hope for our children.

(L-R) Adam brown 111, age 31, Robert Bamblett (centre) and Marlu Riley Brown, age 11. Allan is playing the didgerido.

Robert Bamblett of Australia is keeping the fire of the ancestors burning brightly He was . in Vancouver in March for the Coastal First Nations Dance Festival. The charismatic Bamblett presented stories, songs and dances. He delighted the audience with his humour. Ive been performing for around 20 years, the past 16 years with One Fire Aboriginal Dance Group (original member) and about 20 years with Koori Youth Will Shake Spears (original member), said Bambett.

clay The top half repre. sents my fathers side and is the Murray River, which runs along the boarder of Victoria and New South Wales, Australia. The bottom half represents my mothers side and is the Emu so I would do Emus legs on mine. Bamblett learned to dance by watching elders, like his father, uncles, male cousins and different people in the community and also self taught. My mum and aunties cant teach me because only men teach boys and women would teach the girls, because men and womens business would be done separately , some things were done together, says Bamblett.

Koori Night Market. They have performed at many schools ranging from kindergarten (child care) through to Universities, at which they shared dance, didgeridoo and art workshops and cultural talks. The dance group has been over seas to China, Dubai, Italy Thailand, New , Zealand, Peru. Bamblett has performed in New Zealand, Peru and now Canada. Bamblett says, My main inspiration for sharing my culture is for my kids and other Indigenous people. Also to share my culture with the next generation and this generation of Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians because its about passing on the knowledge, so we dont lose it and people have a better understanding about who we are.

Bamblett, 33, added, There has been more dance groups that Ive performed with, but that has been me just joining in with them, to The One Fire Dance Group make up the numbers. My has done a whole range of first performance was when festivals, such as Moomba, I was in primary school, it Rainbow, Kooiroboree and was in front off my whole year level of grade five/six. I did a hunting dance. The members of One Fire Dance Group come from different parts of Australia. We all come together to form that One Fire, said Bamblett. The 20 members of dance group are aged 3 to 67. Aboriginal people of Australia are known for their intricate designs painted on their bodies while performing their ancestral dances. The body paint that we have is ochre which is a bit like

seven News Source - Your Indigenous

Latash Maurice Nahanee, BA, Publisher Michelle Lorna Nahanee, Publication Designer Marissa Nahanee, Graphic Design & Writing Contact: maurice_nahanee@yahoo.com
No article, photo or any image from this newspaper may be published without the prior written permission of the publisher. Opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher.

Summer 2012

seven - Your Indigenous News Source

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School Plus provides funding for extracurricular programming at First Nations schoolsprogramming that is designed to keep students interested and engaged for the long run. School Plus has already enriched the education of over 8,500 youth in over 50 schools, including Manitobas Indian Springs School, where students are unleashing their potential through an enhanced sports program. Enbridge delivers more than the energy you count on. We deliver on our promise to help make communities better places to live. Its part of the reason we were named one of the Global 100 Most Sustainable Corporations in the World. Visit www.enbridge.com/InYourCommunity to learn more.

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seven - Your Indigenous News Source

Summer 2012

One on One with: Mr John Kim Bell


Hard work, motivation and the drive to make a difference are a few attributes Mr. John Kim Bell is using to create a life of abundance for Indigenous youth and communities throughout Canada. He has focused on the education of youth while honoring the achievements of noteworthy Canadian Aboriginal people.
Each year as Aboriginal families gather to watch the National Aboriginal Achievement Awards, and be inspired by achievements of people who are acknowledged to be the best in their field of endeavour, they are witnessing the vision of Mr. Bell. He initiated the annual Achievement Awards to recognize and honour Indigenous people from all walks of life whether it is business, public service, arts or sports.
ever $1 million aboriginal ballet, Hard work, motivation and In the Land of Spirits in the late the drive to make a difference 1980s. I established I worked so hard. Mythe National are a few attributes Mr. John Aboriginal Achievement FoundaKim Bell is using to create a tion were into productionsand built itall the largest life of abundance for Indigaboriginal charity over 20 years. enous youth and communisuccessful and made ties throughout Canada. He When I started the National has focused on themoney and people education Aboriginal Achievement and development youth while Foundation, no one had any began honoring the achievements responding to the confidence that I could make noteworthy Canadian Aborigileadership work. It was almost imposit I demonstrated. nal people. sible to succeed and I had to The earlytake risky personal bank loans years of building Each year as aboriginal and work seven days a week the Foundationto make it work. I were families gather to watch the for years National Seven: Why was starting Aboriginal Achieveam familiar with can extremely hard andaIlot of the ment Awards, and be inspired management of many aborigiby achievements of people the National Aboriginal see why there are not more nal organizations. Not one even who are acknowledged to comes close to the work ethic Achievement Foundation in theirorganizations on the scale be the best field of that I demonstrated in my 20 they important to you? endeavour,of Mr. are witnessing years at NAAF. Its just of my the vision Kim Bell. HeFoundation. initiated the too hard. There man, wanted Mr. Bell: I want to feel that Iannual Achieve- As a young are Itoo to ment Awards to recognize and make a real difference and I many honour indigenous people am contributing and every of life whetherobstacles for mostprice was prepared to pay the from all walks it and sacrifice a lot to succeed. I is business, public people and who wants service, arts once in a while I have a believe that eventually people or sports. in that kind of good idea that works. If you to live withthe senior ranks of corporations and governments started Kim known will recall, I createdMr. the establishment of the and Bell is beststrain. to admire me because I worked for so hard. were Canadian produced the first ever $1 Aboriginal Arts Foun- hard My productionsmoney Working all successful and made and being dation, which became the Naand people began responding million Aboriginal ballet, tional Aboriginal Achievement organized are essential for to the leadership I demonstratFoundation (NAAF). Over In the Land of Spirits inof twenty years, heabuilt I ed. The myself of building success. call early years a high period the Foundation were extremely the Foundation capacity the late 1980s. I established into Canadas output can see why there hard and I unit and largest Aboriginal charity and, are not more organizations the National Aboriginal is attributed with building people laugh. scale of my a little on the I have Foundation. unprecedented corporate supAchievement Foundation Aboriginal cause. In The harderThere are saying, Its just too hard. I work, port for an too many obstacles for most and built it into the addition to awarding over $16 people and who wants to live largest the luckier I get. million in post-secondary eduAboriginal charity over scholarships during Mr. with that kind of strain. cation 20 A Mohawk from the Kim Bells twenty-year tenure Working hard and being years. as the CEO, he alsoKahnawake community founded organization are essential for and produced the National Absuccess. I call When I started the National inAwards, pacity output myself a high caoriginal Achievement Quebec, Mr. Bell began unit and people a $3.5 million annual television laugh. at a little saying, Aboriginal AchievementThe NAAF playing pianoI havethe age special. has the highThe harder I work, the luckier from the Foundation, no one est level of supportof ten. AtI age 18 he started had get. private sector of any aboriginal any confidence that cause in Canada. conducting major Broadway I could A Mohawk from the Kahnawake community in New make it work. It was almostwas starting the Na- productions in Quebec, musical Mr. Kim Bell began playing Seven: Why tional Aboriginal Achievement impossible to succeed piano with of ten. At age York workingat the agenotables Foundation important to you? 18 he started conducting major and I had to take risky includingBroadway musical productions Sonny Bono, Mr. Kim Bell: I want to feel personal bank loansthat I am contributing and every in New York working with and Bernadette Peters, Gene Bono, notables including Sonny once in while have good work seven days a week a works.IIf youawill recall, Bernadette Peters, Gene Kelly, Kelly, and Vincent Price. idea that and Vincent Price. He traveled created and for years to make it Iwork. produced the first as a as a conductor He traveled conductor for the Bee Gees

By Latash - Maurice Nahanee


Graphic art created for article on Mr. John Kim Bell by Marissa Nahanee, in Adobe Illustrator.

Mr. Bell is best known for the establishment of the Canadian Aboriginal Arts Foundation, which became the National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation (NAAF). Over a period of twenty years, he built the Foundation into Canadas largest Aboriginal charity and, is attributed with building I am familiar with a lot of unprecedented corporate the management of many support for an Aboriginal Aboriginal organizations. cause. In addition to Not one even comes close awarding over $16 million to the work ethic that I in post-secondary education demonstrated in my 20 scholarships during Mr. years at NAAF. Bells twenty-year tenure as the CEO, he also founded As a young man, I wanted to make a real difference and produced the National and I was prepared to pay Aboriginal Achievement the price and sacrifice a Awards, a $3.5 million lot to succeed. I believe annual television special. that eventually people The NAAF has the highest in the senior ranks level of support from of corporations and the private sector of any governments started Aboriginal cause in Canada. to admire me because

for the Bee Gees and Redd Foxx, among others. He is also attributed with starting the career of Shania Twain, having presented her in her first concert events and productions in Toronto.

After a career on Broadway, Mr. Bell became the first-ever Aboriginal symphony conductor when he was appointed to the Toronto Symphony in 1980. In addition to guest appearances with many orchestras in Canada, U.S. and the Royal

National Aboriginal Achievement Awards set design

Mr. Bell:In 2006, I was appointed one of five Canadian advisors to the Prince of Wales. (Prince Charles). My family and I travelled to London, England where I spent time studying the philanthropic work that Prince Charles I believe that she trained leads and funds in the U.K. me as a child to have As an example, he started responsibilities and to care the first organic farm in about the quality of my work. She was a taskmaster. the 1970s and everyone thought he was crazy but I didnt like that much as today organic farming a kid, but it benefitted me is the standard around very well as an adult. the world. He started As a musician, I was the Princes Trust that extremely disciplined and in provides opportunities order to reach a professional for individuals below the level, I had to practice poverty line to start a extremely long hours. business. He is trying to The Founder of the National reform the education and health system in the U.K. Aboriginal Achievement And he preserves ancient Foundation has earned architectural and building many prestigious awards techniques so they are not including the Order of

tion to a particular province, and Redd Foxx, among othbeing very organized. Is this territory, region or community ers. He is Mr. Bell has composed developed U.K., also attributed with a business trait Ontario. Among Mr. Bells within Canada, or an achievestarting the career of Shania through your early days in the the having presentedseveral industry? achievements are: six credit music for her ment abroad that brings Twain music in her first concert events and Divided movies including Mr. Bell: Regarding my passion to Canada. Honorary Doctorates, the productions in Toronto. You and work Loyalties for CTV and the ethic: I have always Seven: Royal Bank Award forwere asked to be a special adviser to After a career on Broadway, Mr. been a passionate individual Trialbecame the first-ever Bear an exceptionally strong of Standing with for Canadianthe Prince of Wales. Could you Achievement, Kim Bell elaborate on aboriginal symphony conducPBS in the U.S., and work ethic. the which came are doingthe types of work with a the British you with tor when he was appointed to monarchy? the Toronto Symphony in Aboriginal by my$250,000.00 cash prize, in 1980. I was raised maternalfirst ever CBC In addition to guest appeargrandmother. She was an dramatic orchestras ances with many television series, hard2003, She was awarded the exceptionally worker. he Mr. Bell: In 2006, I was appointed of in Canada, U.S. and the Royal grew where The Four London, U.K., wouldup on a farmwork inthey advisorsonethe five Canadian Directions. In get up and Keith Kelly AwardPrincethe as of Wales. to Philharmonic in the (Prince Charles). My family Mr. Bell has composed the mufield 1988, Mr. Bell produced,at 4:30 am. She would sole national recipient for and I travelled to London, England sic for several movies including then take her six brothers and directed, and co-composed cultural leadership from the where I spent time studying Divided Loyalties for CTV and sisters to school in a horse philanthropic work that Prince the Trial of Standing Bear for and In the Land of Spirits, buggy, which was a trip of Charles Conference a $1 PBS in the U.S., and the first seven miles. After the Canadian leads and funds in the school she U.K. As an example, he started ever CBC Aboriginal dramatic would work fields again million Aboriginal dance in theof the Arts, and received the first organic farm in the television series, The Four and then do homework. production that a Lifetime Achievement 1970s and everyone thought Directions. In 1988, Mr. Kimtoured Bell produced, directed, and I believe that she trained me as he was crazy but today organic Canada in 1992. Award farming is Royal co-composed In the Land of a child to have responsibilitiesfrom the the standard around Spirits, a $1 million Aboriginal and to care about the quality of the world. He started the Princes Conservancythat provides opportunities of Music in Seven: Very early my dance production that toured in work. She was a taskmaster. Trust for individuals below the poverty Canada in 1992. I didnt like that much as a kid, 2007. your career path you were line to start a business. He is trybut it benefitted me very well ing to reform 2012 Mr. education and Seven: Very early in your as an adult. involved in touring with In early Februarythethe U.K. And he health system in career path you were involved in touring with musicians and As a musician, musicians and celebrities. I was extremely preserves ancient architectural Bell received the Queen and building techniques so they celebrities. You mentioned disciplined and in order to You mentioned being very Elizabeth are not lost through his FoundaII Diamond reach a professional level, I tion for To be had to practice Jubilee organized. Is this a business extremely long Medal.the Built Environment. We build glass square buildings hours. today, but honour, a trait developed through eligible for this try building a stone castle-not so easy. The Founder of the National your early days in the music person must have made a Aboriginal Achievement FounMy job was dation has earned many presindustry? significant this work to determine if any contribution of would be relevant tigious awards including the in Canada. Much of his work Order of Canada and the Order to a particular province, Mr. Bell: Regardingofmy Among Mr. Kim was very relevant but nobody in Ontario. territory Canada actually Bells passion and work ethic:achievements include: , region or wanteda to pay for It was, however, tremensix Honorary Doctorates, the communityit.opportunity Canada, douswithin where I learned I have always been aRoyal Bank Award for Canadian Achievement,or an achievement abroad which came a lot and grew as a person. passionate individual with with a $250,000.00 cash prize, brings 1996, Mr. Kim Bell estabIn credit to in 2003, he was awarded the an exceptionally strongKelly Award thatsole lished Blueprint for the Future, Keith as the national recipient Canada. an annual career fair held for cultural work ethic. across Canada where 1600 to leadership from the Canadian Seven: 2000 Aboriginal high to Arts, and reI was raised by my Conference of theAchievementYou were asked school students witness presentations ceived a Lifetime be a special adviser to the Award from maternal-grandmother. Shethe Royal Conser- from leading Canadian corporations on career development vancy of Music in 2007. Prince of Wales. Could you was an exceptionally hard opportunities. elaborate on the types of In early February 2012 Mr. worker. She grew upKim Bell received the Queen on a Seven: Much of your work you work has involved aboriginal are doing with the Elizabeth II farm where they would get Diamond Jubilee Medal. To be eligible for this British youth. What was your inspiraup and work in the field a person must have monarchy? youth find tion for assisting honour, hope and want to accomplish made a significant contribu-

Philharmonic in London,

Canada and the Order of

at 4:30 am. She would then take her six brothers and sisters to school in a horse and buggy which was a , trip of seven miles. After school she would work in the fields again and then do homework.

Summer 2012 lost through his Foundation for the Built Environment. We build glass square buildings today, but try building a stone castle-not so easy . My job was to determine if any of this work would be relevant in Canada. Much of his work was very relevant but nobody in Canada actually wanted to pay for it. It was, however, a tremendous opportunity where I learned a lot and grew as a person. In 1996, Mr. Bell established Blueprint for the Future, an annual career fair held across Canada where 1600 to 2000 Aboriginal high school students witness presentations from leading Canadian corporations on career development opportunities. Seven: Much of your work has involved Aboriginal youth. What was your inspiration for assisting youth find hope and want to accomplish their goals. Mr. Bell: When I was a young conductor, I was invited to many reserves across Canada. I was only familiar with my community (Kahnawake) and so I found the living conditions and poverty pretty shocking. I was depressed about it and was motivated to try to make a contribution. I had no idea what I was doing and I had no idea how difficult it was going to be, but I believed that education was the key to improve the status of our lives, especially on reserve. I was young and idealistic and knowing what I know today in terms of how hard it is to work within the Aboriginal community, I might not have chosen this path today.

seven - Your Indigenous News Source


been operating as Bell & Bernard Limited and have worked on many types of projects. For example, in 2007, I wrote the business plan and opened the Blackfoot Crossing Historical Park in Sisika, Alberta. Blackfoot Crossing is the largest First Nations owned and operated cultural destination (museum) in Canada. It had a capital cost of nearly $30 million with a $3 million Blackfoot cultural museum exhibition. After that, I have focused on the development of natural resources in partnership with First Nations. I provide services to Brookfield Renewable Power, one of the largest private developers of renewable energy In 2009, I . assisted Enbridge Pipelines Inc, in the establishment of the Enbridge School Plus Program. The Program has awarded approximately $2 million to First Nations schools who wish to undertake all sorts of enrichment programming. I am particularly proud of this, having helped develop the program from scratch. I also work for a mining company, Odyssey Resources in Quebec and I have worked with the James Bay Crees in Quebec to establish Eeyou Power, a Cree owned energy company . I serve on the board of two energy companies, Waas Power, a partnership with the Namgis First Nation on Vancouver Island, and Chiiwedjin Shu Energy, a Cree owned energy company in Quebec. I work across Canada, the U.S., Brazil and more recently China. business opportunities and partnerships with the private sector and governments. Further, corporate Canada requires assistance in understanding and accessing the Aboriginal community . Whether your Aboriginal organization, company, or community requires fundraising, financing, event management, business plans, risk assessments, government or corporate relations, strategic planning, communications including television production and advertising, or the management of a local institution, Bell and Bernard can effectively assist your organization in partnering with governments and corporate Canada. For corporations wishing to work with the Aboriginal community, Bell and Bernard can provide effective advice, research, and access to assist you in negotiating your way to a successful partnership. Bell & Bernard Limited has vast experience in helping businesses and communities grow and achieve their business and financial objectives. Among other services, the company develops strategic business plans to provide a roadmap to the future, undertakes project feasibility studies to determine the merit of specific initiatives, and performs broad based risk assessments of projects and programs to ensure success. BBL works beyond planning, studying and issuing reports and upon request will manage and deliver each program and guarantee its success. Bell & Bernard Limited partners have extensive knowledge in researching, developing and implementing new programs. Bell & Bernard Limiteds work in development includes such projects as designing youth and business programs as well as marketing strategies. Seven: Could you elaborate on the Aboriginal Loan Guarantee Program?

Page 11 you share some thoughts about where you are at today?

Mr. Bell: I currently take Mr. Bell: In 2009, working 150 flights a year and am with Phil Fontaine, I working just as hard as ever. convinced the Ontario Recent accomplishments Government to establish include Aboriginal Loan the $250 million Aboriginal Guarantee Program and I Loan Guarantee Program took Blackfoot Crossing that to enable First Nations was struggling and opened to acquire equity that facility . participation in renewable energy projects. This I am proud of my body of was a considerable work. However, I wish I accomplishment in our could have done more. But history and another theres hope. I have a son, first. What is especially Pearson Hamilton Phoenix important to note is that Bell, age seven. One of his not one chief supported names is Phoenix. This was the idea at the time. But purposeful so he would rise I fought for it and when from my ashes, burning the government asked me brightly and carrying on in why they should do it in his fathers work. light of the fact that the Two years ago, I was invited chiefs werent so keen on to pick up the baton again the idea, I replied, Its the and I conducted the Toronto right thing to do and once Symphony at Harbourfront it is up and running, they in Toronto. The concert will all want to have a loan guarantee and thats exactly was televised and broadcast on APTN and I believe it is what happened. still showing regularly on Seven: You have an APTN. exceptional career. Could

The CP China Group is a I continue travel to reserves multinational company each week in my role as operating 34 major an energy executive. I am companies. They are always sad to see some of looking to invest $30 billion the children who are not in North America and I am doing so well. It makes me seeking opportunities for sick. them. In 1992, Mr. Bell also John Kim Bell, the driving mounted Beyond Survival, force behind Bell & an international Indigenous Bernard Limited, is one of cultural conference of the most successful First over 400 participants from Nations entrepreneurs 12 countries including in Canada. Mr. Bell Lapland, the Soviet Union, has been described by Ecuador, Brazil, Mexico, corporate leaders as the the U.S., Japan, Guatemala, perfect bridge between the Colombia, Argentina, Aboriginal and corporate Nicaragua, and El Salvador. community in Canada Seven: Bell and Bernard is a consulting company that assists people in accomplishing their goals. Today you mentioned you are very busy consulting in the energy business sector. Could you tell us about your work with Enbridge. Mr. Bell:Since 2006, I have

Mr. Bell on the Great Wall of China

BBL possesses an extensive network of private sector corporations, government organizations, and Aboriginal communities. Renowned for its ability to connect the largest companies in Canada with its clients, BBL is able to foster economic and is unsurpassed in the opportunities for the Aboriginal community as an organizer and fundraiser. growth of First Nations businesses, communities Bell & Bernard Limited and organizations. (BBL) commits itself to ensuring that First Nations Bell and Bernard is proud to offer facilitation and and other Aboriginal negotiation services to organizations, companies, complement its corporate and/or communities do Aboriginal relations not miss the expanding component.

n Pearson. Mr. Bell with his so

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Summer 2012
David at Rialto Bridge in Venice, Italy .

David at Mashantucket Pequot Museum & Research Centre.

(Artist Speak continued from page 1) has travelled extensively to see for himself the art he admires. In 1999, Neel was invited to take part in Venice, Biennale. As part of his exhibition he brought over 20 carved masks representing his culture and his thought provoking environmental social commentary masks. He also brought a canoe that he carved. He decided to exhibit the canoe by paddling in the canals of Venice.

the freedom of the media. I am working on a series based on masks by the old masters, which I have seen in the public collections. I think of it as working collaboratively, which allows me to do pieces that pay homage to masters like: Charlie James, Mungo Martin, Bob Harris and Willie Seaweed, said Neel. Neel studied photography in the United States. He worked as a professional photographer in Canada and the United States creating memorable magazine covers and ads. Specializing in black and white portraits, Neels photographs are worth more than a thousand words as they bring you an insight into his subject.

David Neel Gallery

The 1999 trip to Venice was an amazing, once-ina-lifetime experience. To take a Northwest coast Native canoe to the canals of Venice has never been done before, and likely I have been doing portraits wont be done again, said of tribal members of the Neel. Venice is known as Mashantucket Pequot the city-of-masks, and they are closely tied to the water, tribe for their museum since 1997. So far, over 150 so there is a significant portraits have been done, parallel with NWC Native people - we are canoe people and they have a permanent exhibition of these photoand masks are an intrigraphs in their museum in cate part of our culture as Mashantucket, CT, which well. The reception we got is 3 hours from New York from the Venetians and the City, said Neel. I am very visitors was something to honored to be able to do remember. documentary work like this, The refrain Bella, bella because this is the only time, was often heard as we that I am aware of, that a paddled through the canals tribe has ever undertaken of Venice. Many tourists to document their contemrecognized the distinctive porary history in such Northwest Coast style of the a dynamic manner. The canoe. Mashantucket Pequot Neel has developed a new Museum & Research Center concept in oil painting is the largest tribal museum that causes us to look at in North America. Northwest Coast with a David Neel Studio is located fresh eye. in North Vancouver. It is Now I am painting on well worth a visit to see canvas, because I want to world-class jewelry and work with color and I enjoy extraordinary paintings.

Please visit our New Location: 104 West Esplanade, North Vancouver Fine Native Jewellery & Art directly from the Artist www.davidneel.com 604-988-9215 \ 1-800-554-7074

Summer 2012
(Haida Language continued from page 6)

seven - Your Indigenous News Source


(Gwaii Haanas), Haida Heritage Centre at Kay Llnagaay, Gwaii Trust, Council of the Haida Nation and Northern Savings Credit Union. The Bill Reid Gallery would like to acknowledge the Haida Gwaii Museum, Council of the Haida Nation, Shon Group, City of Vancouver, Eric Martin Family Foundation, Scott Hean, North Vancouver Museum & Archives, Herb and Mary Auerbach, David Jensen and Associates, Simon Fraser University and the growing relationship with our neighbours in the Downtown East Side. For further information: Paula Fairweather Tel 604.682.3455 x222 pfairweather@ billreidgallery .ca

Page 13

me. The Haida language is intrinsic to my identity as a Haida woman. To know Xaad kil connects me to my culture, to my homeland of Haida Gwaii, to the Elders alive today and to the Kuniisii (Ancestors) who came before me. Theres a strength in knowing ones own language that is unbreakable, a strength born of tens of thousands of years of existence. In speaking the same words spoken for countless generations, we are keeping alive the way of thinking that made our Nation strong. We have in front of us a great opportunity to continue this gift of language. It is up to us to commit our minds and hearts to honour that gift and embrace the values of our culture, which are communicated through the way of thinking that makes up our language, Xaad kil. Understanding and speaking Xaad kil means that we are undefeated. It means that the resolve of our last five generations to keep our culture and language intact, despite an overwhelming onslaught of colonialism, have been rewarded. Bedard adds, For us to speak Xaad kil with love and strength means that we are honouring Haida Gwaii and iitl Kuniisii, as well as todays Haida and all the generations of Haida that will follow us. Sang waadluwaan.uu talang Xaad Kil hl skatang. Hlganggulee angaa dii gulaagang. Gyaakit.uu sangiitsaa ga hl gusdlagang. Everyday, we learn Haida. I enjoy my work. Sometimes it is diffcult. Ga kayaas Xaad Kil iitl skatadaas gahl gan iitl xangeilgang. Ga kayaas.uu hlganggul gusdlangang. Damaan.uu tla kayaas Gan saa dii gu dang. Gang. We are lucky to have the fluent Elders teach us. They are doing important work. I hold the Elders in high esteem for the work they do. Hawiidaan.uu talang kihl yah daasaang. Hawiidaan. uu iitl gwii kaalasaang. One day soon, we will get it right. One day soon, we will win. The Haida Gwaii Museum at Kay Llnagaay would like to acknowledge its partners: the Haida Society, the Xaad Kihl Ga Hll Suu.u Society and the Skidegate Haida Immersion Program, along with the generous financial support of Canadian Heritage, Canada Council for the Arts, Parks Canada

Mary Swanson. Photo by Farah Nosh.

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seven - Your Indigenous News Source

Summer 2012

A force of nature

Cultural renaissance

As a former History major in college, I see practicing my Her passion for engaging with critical issues peoples rich art as a natural segue in continuing my study surrounding First Nation art, history, and culture has of history through our art. My goal is to educate and developed out of, and continues to be informed by, her represent and also promote my people and to tell the world rights as a participant and responsibilities as a teacher we are not just objects in a museum. We are Alive! of her peoples language, songs, dances, ceremony, and art. Mike Dangeli is a force of nature. Everything about him is big. Most
importantly, Mike has a big heart. He is generous with his tremendous talent in visual and performing art. Sought out by fine art collectors from around the world, Dangeli seems to take it all in stride and remains true to himself, his friends and his people. Michael is of the Nisgaa, Tlinget, Tsetsaut, and Tsimshian Nations; his traditional name is Goothl Tsimilx, which means The heart of the beaver lodge. He belongs to the Beaver/Eagle clan. The Nisgaa originate from the Nass River valley of northern British Columbia. In many parts of the Northwest coast of BC, the culture and ceremonies are still an integral part of peoples lives. Many have a clan system and each person is a member of the clan. It is a world that has been reclaimed by heroes such as Mikes elders and ancestors. He began learning his peoples ways at an early age by attending traditional feast/ceremonies and gathering/preparing traditional foods and performing in his families dance group. While in high school in Metlakatla, Alaska, Michael began studying North West Coast art. It is a demanding art style that has many rules that give rise to the icons for which the region is known around the world. Ovoids, u-shapes, formline are some of the elements for which it has become renowned. Striving to understand and appreciate his peoples rich art form, he majored in history at the University of Alaska South East-Ketchikan. In 1994 Michael began a yearlong apprenticeship under his Uncle, Master Carver Randy Adams of Prince Rupert, BC. From his uncle, Michael learned two dimensional plaque and panel carving, mask making and design. To continue his artistic education, Michael moved to the Seattle area, where he joined the Tsimshian Haayuuk Dancers led by David Boxley, a prominent Alaskan Tsimishian Artist and Carver. In 1998, Boxley accepted Michaels request to become his apprentice. The apprenticeship included learning design and carving, also preparing for numerous shows and exhibits, including three totem poles. Striving to expand his understanding of and ability in carving, painting and design, Mike always honors opportunities to learn from many Master Carvers including: Beau Dick, Simon Dick, Robert Davidson, Reg Davidson, Henry Greene, Lyle Campbell, and many others. Also contributing greatly to his work is regularly returning home to Northern BC and Alaska where he continues to learn oral histories, songs, dances, and protocols from his Nisgaa, Tsimshian, and Tlingit elders. Dangeli now lives in Vancouver, British Columbia where he has created and implemented an art and carving based program called the House of Culture. The House of Culture takes a holistic approach teaching art and culture to children, youth, adults and elders. The House of Culture offers classes, workshops and seminars to new, emerging and artists in general. Michaels works include design, regalia, masks, rattles, paddles, spoons and ladles, skin and box drums, bent wood boxes, several silk-screen prints, and nine totem poles. Dangeli has had the opportunity of showcasing North West Coast art in British Columbia, Ontario, Austria, Malaysia, Germany, Alaska, Washington, Indiana, Idaho and Iowa. Michael is also an accomplished dancer and has been studying traditional dance since he was five. Michael has had the honor to perform with The Juneau Tsimshian Nisgaa Dancers, Prince Rupert Nisgaa Dancers, The Tsimshian Haayuuk Dancers, The Get Hoan Dancers, and Rainbow Creek Dancers. He has also co-led the Lax Kaien Tsimshian Dancers and now leads his own group the Get Heyetsk Dancers. At an early age, Mike began to attend feasts, potlatches and other ceremonies in BC and Alaska with his mother Arlene Roberts to start his training in each of the languages of his diverse background and begin study their art forms, histories, and cultures. At these gathering, Mike also danced with his familys dance group, the Juneau Tsimshian-Nisgaa Dancers, lead by his grandmother and grandfather, Louisa and Reggie Dangeli. From these experiences, he learned how to host his own feasts, potlatches and totem pole raisings, prepare traditional foods, speak for his family, and to perform the songs and dances of his people. Regularly returning home to Kincolith each year, Michael continues to study oral history and protocol from his grand mother Louise Barton-Dangeli. Mike currently lives in Vancouver, BC where he founded the House of Culture: Art and Carving Studio. The programs that he organized in the House of Culture sought a holistic approach to teaching Northwest Coast art to urban First Nations children, youth, and adults through classes, workshops and seminars. Protection and preservation of cultural legacies possessed a great challenge for most of the people on the North West Coast. Draconian laws forbidding the practice of culture, language, ceremonies almost extinguished an entire way of life for Aboriginal people. Fortunately many Indigenous people were able to practice and save much of their culture. Dangeli has steadfastly held onto her culture by practicing the lessons the Mike and Miquel Dangeli. Photo: Maurice Nahanee. learned from elders and cultural teachers. Through living true to her culture she gained the respect of her elders and chiefs who continue to gift her cultural treasures such as songs, dances, language, protocol. Education is a tool that can help Indigenous people learn and perpetuate their cultures. Dangeli is working towards a Doctoral degree in First Nations Art History She feels that knowledge of arts will assist . in the retention and revitalization of culture. As a child, Miquel Dangeli was groomed by leaders in Metlakatla (Alaska) to be a dance leader, a caretaker of songs, and a person responsible at potlatches and totem pole raisings. It inspired Miquel to study of Northwest Coast Native Art History at the University of Washington, where she graduated with her B.A. in 2002. To refine and build upon her critical engagement with First Nations art and issues, Miquel earned her Masters Degree in art history from UBC in Vancouver. Her thesis focused on the work of B.A. Haldane, a 19th Century Tsimshian photographer who established a portrait studio in Metlakatla in 1899. Considered to be the first professional Native photographer on the Northwest Coast, Haldanes photography documented the subversive means through which Tsimshian cultural practices continued during a time of intense colonial oppression. Miquels work on Haldanes photography and other areas of her research has been published widely and she has been invited to speak at conferences and University classes on this and other topics relating to First Nation art and performance. She is currently a Doctoral Candidate at the University of British Columbia specializing in Northwest Coast First Nations Art History . Raised in the only Indian Reserve in the state of Alaska, Miquel Dangeli is of the Tsimshian Nation of Metlakatla Indian Community . She belongs to the Eagle Clan of the Gispaxloots and carries the names Shug Goad Lax Skeek (Devoted Eagle) and Taakw Shaawt (Winter Woman). From elementary through high school, she traveled with the dance groups Git Lax Likstaa and the Fourth Generation to dance at potlatches, cultural exchanges, and other ceremonies throughout the United States and Canada. Witnessing these events, spending time with her elders, and learning her peoples subsistence methods and oral history had a tremendous impact on her life. Miquel continues to work closely with her community and regularly commutes between BC and Alaska to fulfill her role as a member of Metlakatlas tribal right committee, healing art curator, and most recently Director of the Duncan Cottage Museum. Her life-long ambition has been to build a Tsimshian cultural center there. She has worked at the Burke Museum in Seattle, UBCs Museum of Anthropology and , the National Museum of the American Indian. In her role as Director, she created and implemented the strategic plan for the Duncan Cottage Museums recovery from a decade of mismanagement and had its grand re-opening in August 2010. Its progress has featured as a Museum Success Story by the Alaska State Museum.

Summer 2012

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Summer 2012

CELEBrITY PrOFILES
Sekyu Siyam Chief Ian Campbell
Hereditary Chief Ian Campbell Xalek/Sekyu Siyam, is an elected member of the Squamish Nation Chiefs and Council. He is the youngest of the sixteen hereditary chiefs of the Squamish Nation. In his role as an elected member of the community he serves as an official spokesperson and Cultural Ambassador. Sekyu Siyam is a Negotiator for Intergovernmental Relations, Natural Resources and Revenue, which is the economic branch of the Squamish Nation. Chief Ian Campbell is instrumental in advancing the interest of Aboriginal Rights and Title through agreements on forestry, crown land development, land use planning, recreation and park-co-management. He also advocated for the establishment of conservancy areas such as Xay Temixw (Spiritual land), which resulted in a negotiated land use agreement with the province of BC to protect cultural and spiritual values within traditional Squamish Nation territory. As a Cultural Ambassador Sekyu Siyam has traveled nationally and internationally empowering audiences, while sharing the rich, vibrant history and culture of his people. He engages audiences through humour, use of the Squamish language, storytelling and song. Sekyu Siyam is acknowledged as a culture leader among his peers. continuity of tradition, and it is Xaleks journeys overseas has taken through his beliefs that he carries him to Europe, Taiwan and Japan. forward, in his life work, the He is a strong advocate for children traditions and language of the and youth. Through developing Squamish people. programs that connect young people In his work on the Steering to their land and language he Committee for the Coast Salish empowered people to take pride in Gathering he has focused on the need the achievement of their ancestors and of the treasures that have been for the Nations and Tribes utilize their traditional teachings and language to passed on to the Squamish Nation. develop policies and governance that Chief Campbell believes in the preserve and protect their cultural

Photo credit: Gary Fiegehen Photography

legacies. Through understanding and knowing their history, First Nation people empower who they are while moving toward a future of prosperity that embraces conservation, sustainability, recognition, and economic development. Named one of British Columbias Best and Brightest Up and Comers Chief Campbell is a member of many boards and advisory committees in a diverse array of organizations,

including the Fraser Basin Council, the Aboriginal Achievement Awards, the Justice Institute Advisory Committee, and the North Vancouver Outdoor School Advisory Committee. On the international level he has traveled in his role as a Squamish Nation Councillor to establish political, cultural relations with many Indigenous leaders such as Maori King Tuhatia, His Holiness the 33rd Minri Trisin of Tibet, and Pacific Island National Kings and Queens.

Alicia Allard: Opening Ceremonies inspire a journey home.


In conversation with LatashMaurice Nahanee
In the autumn of 2009, over 300 Indigenous youth were recruited from all across Canada to perform in the Opening Ceremonies for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games. At first they did not know they were being asked to perform in one of the largest spectacles on the planet, but just shortly before the Opening Ceremonies they were told they would be representing all the Indigenous people of Canada if they so chose. Imagine the feeling and responsibility they all felt about representing their cultures and Canada on a world stage. It was the first time in the history of the modern Olympic Winter Games that Aboriginal people would be showcased in the Opening Ceremonies of the Winter Olympic Games. I was hired by David Atkins Enterprises, to recruit over 110 Aboriginal and Mtis youth from British Columbia to perform in the Opening Ceremonies of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics. It was an opportunity to work with of the best people in showbiz and some of the finest Indigenous youth. Alicia Allard was selected to represent the Mtis people of Canada. She says that on life decisions she follows her heart. She felt it was the right thing to do. Allard says it is hard to describe how it felt to be waiting in the VOM just before performing at BC Place Stadium on the night of the Opening ceremonies. She felt more nervous and excited than afraid. I felt very proud to showcase our culture to the world. Besides a live stadium audience of more than 80,000 people and a world TV viewing of more than 4.5 billion people. At a conference she met Willie Little Child and Dr. Martin Brokenleg. They both said the real heroes today are the Aboriginal youth who danced in the Opening Ceremonies, said Allard. I was dancing for the seven generations before us and seven generations who are following. I was adopted so I was also dancing for the ancestors. And of course I was thinking of my daughter. It was my first time dancing in public. We were fortunate to have Maddy McCallum (who also performed). She helped to train us in Mtis style dancing: the Mtis jig. She was an inspiration for us, said Allard. The youth trained and rehearsed together for 14 days prior to Opening Ceremonies.

she came from the Chippewas of the Georgina Island First Nation in Ontario. She also found out she belongs to the Bigcanoe family. Eventually her research led her to family historian Andy Bigcanoe. He invited Allard to visit her homeland.

At the IYG campfires Allard said many of the youth spoke of their families and where they came from. It was an inspiration for Allard to find her roots and identity. She went home this past

January and brought her mothers ashes to a resting place. After I spread the ashes in the snow the number 7 appeared, Allard said.

The youth recruited for the Opening Ceremonies were at first told they were being invited to participate in the Indigenous Youth Gathering (IYG). IYG became a code name for those who came to BC and who eventually performed at the Opening Ceremonies held in the traditional Coast Salish territory now known It was astonishing to see all the as Vancouver. Allard said that at performers in their regalia during the the residence where the IYG youth dress rehearsals, she said. stayed while in Vancouver there After the Opening Ceremonies, were campfires at night. It was an Allard spent some time researching opportunity for the youth to be her family roots. She found that together and just be themselves.

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Summer 2012

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St:l Stewardship: Next Generations


Aboriginal-owned Seven Generation Environmental Services (SGES) company showcased a new collaborative and entrepreneurial approach BC First Nations are taking when it comes to development projects on and off their traditional territories.
build bridges outside of the courts, by developing partnerships that include First Nations businesses and skilled labour, is Tana Mussell, an environmental technician and team leader at SGES. Tana is the daughter of the late Chief Roy Mussell, a visionary among First Nations chiefs, who was a champion of collaboration, negotiation, environmental sustainability and capacity building - especially for Aboriginal youth.

Seven Generations sustainability is a First Nations belief urging the current generation to live sustainably, make decisions that do not negatively impact our children, as well as collectively work for the benefit of the next seven generations.
HOST DRUM: BLACKFISH MC: NELSON LEON ARENA DIRECTOR: ZACK CAILING

It was an opportunity for demonstrating its environmental monitoring and site restoration expertise to an Land stewardship is international audience at a tremendously imporGLOBE 2012 (March 14-16, tant issue for British 2012), SGES was created Columbians and particuin 2011, when six St:l larly for Aboriginal First Nations (Aitchelitz, communities, says Mussel. Leq:mel, Skawahlook, Im proud to carry on the Skowkale, Tzeachten and legacy of my father who Yakweakwioose) responded dedicated his life to ensure to BC Hydros Interior to that the next generation Lower Mainland (ILM) our young people - had Transmission Project, a access to education and $700-million project that will training and the supports expand the Crown corpothey needed in order to be rations ability to deliver successful. His contribuenergy from the Interior to tions to advance Aboriginal the Lower Mainland and interests throughout the Vancouver Island. province included groundFor Grand Chief Joe Hall, breaking work with the the Chair of the Board of Fraser Basin Council to SGES, this new infrastrucpromote sustainable develture project presented an opment of the Fraser River. immediate opportunity At SGES, we believe that to create a First Nations our traditional knowledge, company that would provide as well as our growing meaningful training and expertise in environmental employment for Aboriginal assessment, monitoring people while also ensuring and restoration, can play a they can become more key role in the success of actively involved and environmental and infraconnected with the longstructure projects around term stewardship and the province. My dad would sustainability of the land. approve. He would be proud. The newly formed SGES partnered with Nanaimo-based Vancouver Island University, which customized its renowned applied-learning Natural Resources Extension Program and delivered the instruction and training in Chilliwack to 18 Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal trainees. SGES commences work with BC Hydro. We believe projects and developments on traditional territory present opportunities for First Nations to create, own and operate relevant, professional and profitable enterprises, said Grand Chief Joe Hall. Just as importantly, this approach and these Aboriginal-owned companies can also play a key role in providing land use certainty for business development. Another symbol of the desire of BC First Nations to seek opportunities to Grand Chief Hall, who was a close friend and colleague of Chief Roy Mussell, hopes that SGES will one day become the leading Aboriginal-owned provider of environmental monitoring and related services in British Columbia, where the defining sustainability principles of the company will be shared with and adopted by project stakeholders. We were pleased to work side-by-side with six St:l communities to help create a training program that will see skilled Aboriginal and non-aboriginal people employed on important projects throughout B.C., including BC Hydros Interior to Lower Mainland transmission project; a project which helps us meet the growing need for electricity in B.C., said Melissa Holland, BC Hydros director of major projects.

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Summer 2012

Online Mentoring Program.: Helping students reach for the stars.


Aboriginal students around the province are going into space virtual space, through the Aboriginal eMentoring BC program. Last November approximately 50 Aboriginal students began spending up to two hours a week with a mentor from a university health science program.
Providing opportunities Its called eMentoring for kids to see themselves and its a new program at university is especially that uses the Internet to important for first-generaconnect Aboriginal youth tion kids kids who may be with role models who will the first in their family to provide them with the graduate from high school support, knowledge and or to attend post-secondary, confidence they need to succeed in university, said says Gladish. Mentors can help kids move toward that Jan Gladish, a curriculum goal through a series of teacher assigned to assist the Surrey School Districts activities, conversations and events intended to develop literacy and Aboriginal their awareness and pique education departments. their interest in pursuing This program is available post-secondary school. to secondary learners. Jan Gladish is from the Heiltsuk Katherine Wisener, project First Nation. manager of eMentoring at the eHealth Strategy Aboriginal youth are Office in UBCs Faculty of dramatically under-repreMedicine, says the eMensented in post-secondary education, particularly toring project is essentially the health sciences, which an early intervention represent some of the program. Its often the case fastest growing career that Aboriginal students tracks in North America. finish high school and then look into a health career A recent $917,000 research only to realize theyve grant awarded to Dr. dropped a course or dont Sandra Jarvis-Selinger, have the credits, effectively Assistant Professor in the shutting those doors, Department of Surgery, aims to improve the interest explains Wisener. This is about instilling that dedicain medicine careers and provide a service to support tion among students to push through, work hard and Aboriginal learners. keep those doors open. Aboriginal eMentoring B.C. is aimed at building post-secondary career pathways for Aboriginal youth. Funded by the Canadian Institute for Health Research, the program is a partnership between the UBC Faculty of Medicine, UBC eHealth Strategy Office, Okanagan School District, Surrey School District, Adams Lake Band, Akisqnuk First Nation and Sto:lo Nation. The program works by matching Aboriginal youth with post-secondary health science students from UBC (Vancouver and Okanagan campuses) who communicate with them in a structured online environment for up to two hours a week for a minimum of one school year. Mentors aim to provide Aboriginal students with the knowledge, confidence and skills to stay in school, create the potential to enter post-secondary education and ideally choose a career path in the health sciences. Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal medical students volunteer their time to help the high school students. Mentors and mentees connect through a monitored online platform. The curriculum is largely selfpaced, but the topics are structured to provide the most support to Aboriginal students who want to attend college and university after graduation. Topics include setting academic goals, exploring post-secondary opportunities, seeking financial aid, overcoming obstacles, time management and even writing a resume. Mentors have been rigorously screened by UBC, and have been given additional training in child safety, child development, activity planning and Aboriginal culture and history . The eMentoring program seeks to target students early enough to influence their initial high school course choices. It can be too late in Grade 12, says Sandra Jarvis-Selinger, If theyve decided that biology and chemistry arent their cup of tea, they probably havent kept their options open for a career in medicine. Aboriginal eMentoring is really about giving those

options back, keeping the potential open and offering students the chance to positively impact their lives. Its also about changing the way academic institutions think about access to health science programs by making it more about real opportunities for success. There is a great need for Aboriginal dentists, family doctors, surgeons, lab sciences, and surgeons. Other careers in medicine include X-ray technicians, operate dialysis machines and blood testing. These are great opportunities for those who are willing to boldly go in search of their career. Learn more about the program at: www.ementoringbc.com

UBC online mentors assist Aboriginal students in Health Sciences.

The United Nations Convention on The Rights of a Child


Rights are what Aboriginal (Inuit, First Nations, and Mtis) Children and Youth should have and be able to do. All Children and youth have the same rights around the world and are listed in the UN Conventions on the Rights of the Child. Almost every country has signed and agreed to these rights, Canada signed on May 28, 1990. Each of these rights are connected to each other and all share equal importance. Sometimes, we have to think about the rights in terms of what is the best for children in a situation, and what is critical to life and protection from harm. As you become more aware of your rights, you gain more power in the choices that affect you and to be able to exercise your rights.

Article 19
You have the right to be protected from being hurt or badly treated in mind, body, and spirit.

Article 29
Your education should help you use and develop your personality, talents and abilities to the fullest. It should also help you learn to live peacefully, protect the environment, human rights, and yours and others cultures. Children have a particular responsibility to respect the rights their parents, and education should aim to develop respect for the values and culture of their parents.

Article 37
No one is allowed to punish you in a cruel and harmful way. If a youth breaks they law they should not be treated in a harmful way. They should not be put in prison with adults, be able to stay in contact with their families, and should not be sentenced to life of prison with out the possibility of release.

Article 20
You have the right to special protection and help if you cant live with your parents.

Article 1
Everyone under age 18 years in the whole world have all these rights.

Article 10
If you and your parents are living in separate countries, you have the right to get back together and live in the same place.

Article 21
You have the right to have the best care for you if you are adopted or fostered or living in care by people who respect your ethnic group, culture, religion, and language.

Article 38
You have a right to protection in times of war. If you are under 15, you should never have to be in an army or take part in a battle.

Article 30
If you come from a minority group, because of your race, religion or language, you have the right to enjoy your own culture, practice your own religion, and use your own language.

Article 2
You have the right to protection against discrimination. This means that nobody can treat you badly because of your color, gender, culture, religion, if you speak another language, have a disability, or are rich or poor.

Article 11
You should not be kidnapped.

Article 22
You have the right to special protection and help if you are a refugee. A refugee is someone who has had to leave their country because it is not safe for them to live there.

Article 39
You have the right to help if you have been hurt, neglected, or badly treated.

Article 12
You have the right to an opinion and for it to be listened to and taken seriously. You should be and be able to listen as well to speak up about your schooling, health, and more.

Article 40
You have the right to help in defending yourself if you are accused of breaking the law.

Article 31
You have the right to play and relax by doing things like sports, music and drama.

Article 3
All adults should always do what is best for you. For example: when making decisions about your school or life plan.

Article 23
If you are disabled, either mentally or physically, you have the right to special care and education to help you develop and lead a full life.

Article 13
You have the right to find out things and say what you think, through making art, speaking and writing, unless it breaks the rights of others.

Article 41
You have the right to any rights in laws in your country or internationally that give you better rights than these.

Article 32
You have the right to protection from work that is bad for your health or education.

Article 4
You have the right to have your rights made a reality by the government. They must help to make sure that you can reach your full potential to live a happy life.

Article 24

Article 5
You have the right to be given guidance by your parents and family.

Article 6
You have the right to life and survive any/current situation you are in and develop healthy.

Article 7
You have the right to have a name and a nationality.

Article 8
You have the right to an identity.

Article 9
You have the right to live with your parent(s), unless it is bad for you. If your parents do not live together you have the right to stay in contact with both parents, unless this might hurt you. You have the right to live with a family who cares for you.

You have a right to the best Article 14 health possible and to medical You have the right to think what care and to information that will you like and be whatever culture/ help you to stay well. religion you want to be, with your parents guidance. Article 25 You have the right to have your Article 15 living arrangements checked You have the right to be with regularly if you have to be friends and join or set up clubs, looked after away from home. unless this breaks the rights of others. Article 26 You have the right to help from Article 16 the government if you are poor You have the right to a private or in need. life. For instance, you can keep a diary that other people are not Article 27 allowed to see. You have the right to a good enough standard of living. This Article 17 means you should have food, You have the right to collect clothes and a place to live. information from the media radios, newspapers, television, Article 28 etc. from all around the world. You have the right to a good You should also be protected quality education. Schools from information that could should respect your dignity. For harm you. schools to benefit children and youth, they should be run in an Article 18 orderly way without the use You have the right to be brought of violence. Also, you should be up by your parents, if possible. encouraged to go to school to the highest level you can.

Article 33
You have the right to be protected from dangerous drugs and the drug trade.

Article 42
All adults and children should know about this convention. You have a right to learn about your rights and adults should learn about them too.

Article 34
You have the right to be protected from any type of sexual abuse.

Articles 43-54
are about how governments and international organizations will work to give children their rights.

Article 35
No-one is allowed to kidnap you or sell you.

Article 36
You have the right to protection from of any other kind of exploitation (being taken advantage of) that could harm your well-being and personal growth.

Created by Indigenous Events for more information email indigenous.events@me.com

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