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How to support Indigenous Peoples in Canada this September

Queen Elizabeth II will be buried in St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle on Monday September 19th.

The Canadian government has declared this day a national day of mourning. A memorial parade with the Canadian Armed Forces and the RCMP and a memorial ceremony will be held in Ottawa.

However, some Canadians do not feel like mourning.

For all the grace, strength and “unwavering devotion” she brought to her country, Queen Elizabeth II also served as the face of colonialism in many places around the world – and Canada is no exception.

Ahead of her funeral and the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation on September 30th, rabble would like to share some resources on ways to support tribal peoples on that day and beyond.

Western Canada

The Indian Residential School Survivors Society is a provincial organization with a 20 year history of providing services to Indian Residential School Survivors. Governed by an elected board of directors from six BC regions who are boarding school survivors or intergenerational survivors.

“IRSSS provides essential services to boarding school survivors, their families and those dealing with intergenerational trauma. This impact affects every family and every community in BC and Canada. This fact is most evident in Corrections Canada Services – the number of First Nations incarcerated, Child and Family Services child arrests, high numbers of people on welfare, unemployment and underemployment, lower levels of education, lowest number within an ethnic group For a minority of “health determinants,” the list of impacts is extremely high, while the services available to effectively support residential school impacts remain quite small.” – irsss.ca

The Native Women’s Association of Canada is a national organization representing Indigenous women, girls and people of all genders in Canada.

“NWAC is committed to national and international legislative and policy reforms to promote equality for Indigenous women, girls, two-spirit, gender-balanced and LGBTQQAI+ people. Through advocacy, policy and law analysis, NWAC works to preserve Indigenous culture and promote the well-being of all Indigenous women, girls and people of different genders, as well as their families and communities.” nwac.ca

The Helping Spirit Lodge Society is a non-profit transitional home in the Vancouver area that has served more than 5,000 women and children since May 1991.

“The organization’s work is informed by the belief that it is indigenous peoples who must set the agenda in providing solutions to problems that are detrimental to them and their traditionally proud cultural heritage.” hsls.approx

Northern Territories

True North Aid is a registered charity that serves and supports indigenous communities in northern Canada through “hands-on humanitarian assistance.”

With significant barriers to accessing goods and services in remote communities and striking inequalities in health and well-being, income, nutrition and housing, there is still work to be done. The issues facing Indigenous communities in Canada are complex and the result of an accumulation of events and actions that have occurred over the past 150 years. True North Aid believes that the right to self-government and self-determination is key to addressing these inequalities and closing the poverty gap.” – truenorthaid.ca

Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami is an organization dedicated to improving the health and well-being of the Inuit through research, advocacy, political leadership, public education and the association of the Inuit across Canada.

“Our work includes research, advocacy, outreach and education about the issues affecting our communities. We work closely with the four Inuit regions to present unified priorities in Ottawa… We are governed by leaders of Inuit rights-holding land claims organizations. We defend the rights and interests of the Inuit through our relationship with the Crown.” – Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami

Central Canada

The Legacy of Hope Foundation is an Indigenous-led organization dedicated to educating Canadians about the history and impact of boarding schools on generations and the Sixties Scoop, and to raise awareness of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls.

“The LHF works to encourage people to address racism and discrimination in order to contribute to equality, dignity and just relationships between all. We will continue to work with teachers, school boards, universities, police departments, governments, civil servants, banks, unions, private companies and citizens to achieve these goals. The LHF offers a unique and comprehensive collection of resources, exhibitions, workshops, and research reports for anyone interested in learning more about Indigenous Peoples and willing to work for reconciliation. We believe that true reconciliation requires consistent, positive, and informed effort and action by all.” – legacy of hope.ca

The First Nations Child and Family Caring Society is an organization dedicated to providing education and research to advance the well-being of First Nations children, families and communities.

“The Caring Society supports First Nations children, youth and families so they have equal opportunities to grow up safely at home, be healthy, receive a good education and be proud of who they are.” www.fncaringsociety.com

The Native Canadian Center of Toronto is a Toronto-based non-profit organization originally founded in 1962. The organization’s goal is to empower the indigenous people of the city and surrounding areas by offering programs that support spiritual, emotional, physical, and spiritual well-being.

“For over 50 years, the Native Canadian Center of Toronto has been at the forefront of building a healthy and vibrant urban Indigenous community in Toronto. We serve over 2,000 clients annually and work tirelessly to provide culture-centric services and programs to improve the economic, social, cultural and health outcomes of our associates.” – ncct.on.ca

The Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund is a registered charity dedicated to improving the lives of Indigenous Peoples in Canada. In partnership with the Wenjack family, the charity aims to educate the public about boarding schools and the story of Chanie Wenjack.

“Inspired by Chanie’s story and Gord’s call to build a better Canada, the Gord Downie & Chanie Wenjack Fund aims to build cultural understanding and pave the way for reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous peoples. Our goal is to improve the lives of indigenous people by building awareness, education and connections among all peoples in Canada.” – downiewenjack.ca

The Prairies

The Center for Indigenous Environmental Resources was founded in 1995 by 10 First Nation Chiefs from across Canada as Canada’s first indigenous non-profit environmental organization.

“CIER supports Indigenous peoples and communities to be at the forefront of positive environmental change, using the best of Western and Indigenous knowledge to create a world that is balanced and supports the well-being of all living things.” – yourcier.org

Red River Echoes is a grassroots collective of Métis/Michif peoples committed to moving the land and reclaiming sovereignty, culture and kinship in Winnipeg.

“We are young MMF citizens, local leaders, language learners, university graduates, students, parents, educators, academics, artists, healthcare workers, civil servants, advocates and grassroots activists and organizers committed to standing by our Indigenous relatives stand and ensure democracy in the Métis nation.” – Red River Echoes home page.

Bear Clan Patrol is a group of volunteers who operate out of Winnipeg and act as a guard system for Indigenous peoples in the area.

“Given that the Aboriginal population in Winnipeg ranges from 60,000 to 80,000 and is heavily concentrated in certain inner city neighborhoods, there was a feeling that the community needed to organize to keep the peace and serve community members. So the concept behind the patrol is for people from the community to work with the community to provide personal safety downtown in a non-threatening, non-violent, and supportive way.“ – bearclanpatrol.org

Atlantic provinces

The Aboriginal Women’s Association of Prince Edward Island is a non-profit, representative organization dedicated to supporting, educating and empowering the well-being of Indigenous women through programs and opportunities.

“AWAPEI supports women and girls who identify as First Nation, Metis and Inuit and live on Prince Edward Island. We are committed to providing leadership and guidance in cultural, social, economic and political aspects… Despite historic and ongoing colonial and patriarchal attempts to control or eliminate women’s leadership, the importance of empowering Aboriginal people has become very clear -to empower and educate women in conditions; Health, Wellness, Healing and Violence Prevention.” – awapei.org

The First Light St. John Friendship Center is a nonprofit organization that provides programs and social support services for St. John’s Indigenous communities.

“First Light is a registered non-profit organization that serves the urban Indigenous and non-Indigenous community alike by providing programs and services rooted in the revitalization, empowerment, and celebration of Indigenous cultures and languages ​​in a spirit of trust, respect, and friendship . ” – firstlightnl.ca

More resources ahead of National Day of Truth and Reconciliation

The Indian Residential School Survivor Society maintains a hotline for boarding school survivors in crisis. The 24-hour crisis hotline is available at 1-800-721-0066.

Read  Ask the Experts: How to Fight for Reproductive Freedom in Your Community | News & Commentary

Individuals affected by the missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls may contact the MMIWG Crisis Line toll-free at 1-844-413-6649.

First Nations, Inuit and Métis seeking immediate emotional support can contact the Hope for Wellness Help Line toll-free at 1-855-242-3310 or online chat at hopeforwellness.ca.

The National Center for Truth and Reconciliation offers University of Manitoba teaching materials here.

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