Maamawi Collective is a settler collective of volunteers established on the traditional territories of the Anishinaabe, Haudenosaunee, and Huron Wendat Nations in Uxbridge, Ontario. We are not certified experts, but offer a portal for settlers/non-Indigenous people to learn from First Nations, Métis and Inuit Peoples. We wish to create understanding of the Truth and Reconciliation Calls to Action. Since 2018 we are honoured to have many members of First Nations and Métis communities offer support and guidance as we learn. We welcome you to join us as we continue to learn. As the TRC’s Executive Summary states, “We are all Treaty people.”
Coordinator, Barbara Blower’s First Experience
I attended a KAIROS Blanket Exercise in the spring of 2017 and was presented with a factual perspective of life as an Indigenous person in Canada, “Then and Now” so to speak! The final part of the exercise was an invitation to comment on what had been presented.
I moved to the centre of the circle and spoke between big breaths and tears about my lack of previous knowledge relating to the continuing relationships between our governments in Canada and First Peoples.
I left the meeting knowing that I had a task to complete, but with no idea what that task would be.
I created a letter that took me six months to write! Yep! Really… driving, washing dishes, waiting in line all offered time to think about what I wanted to say.
I sent my letter to the editors of local newspapers in Jan 2018. My letter landed on the desk of Moya Dillon at the Times Journal, her piece was published and MAAMAWI COLLECTIVE was created.
My presentation to Uxbridge Council
MONDAY JAN 14/19
My name is Barbara Blower, resident of The Township of Uxbridge since 1985.
I am here this morning to offer suggestions in support of Canada’s TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION COMMISSION – Recommendation # 53 iv
In the spring of 2017, I attended a KAIROS Blanket Exercise at a local church. I’m not a member of any faith based group but I went along, mostly out of curiosity, since my knowledge of Canada’s history relating to First People was limited. The facts and documentation presented left me in tears. The MAAMAWI COLLECTIVE is my response.
MAAMAWI COLLECTIVE is a collection of “Volunteers” who strive to provide a source of information and create positive connections with Indigenous Peoples.
We were honored to be invited to participate in ORANGE SHIRT DAY – UXBRIDGE 2018 and have committed to this event for September 29th – 2019, which will be the third year for ORANGE SHIRT DAY – UXBRIDGE.
I believe that acknowledgement and recognition are cornerstones of good relationships, therefore, I respectfully request that support for
TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION COMMISSION – Recommendation # 53. mandate item (iv) 4…
“Promote public dialogue, public/private partnerships, and public initiatives for reconciliation. “…be integrated into The Township of Uxbridge’s day to day activities.
I commend Mayor Dave Barton, for including a LAND ACKNOWLEDGEMENT at the October 2018 inaugural council meeting, to my mind, an encouraging start to future partnerships related to TRC – Resolutions.
Include a Simple Land Acknowledgement (SLA):
- First Council Meeting of each month
- On all TOWNSHIP MEDIA
- Add to each e-mail signature
- Add to Business Stationary at re-print time.
- Add to Town Hall Sign (outside)
As an example of TRC partnerships, recently I noticed that Nathan Phillips Square in Toronto has added a ***Indigenous Medicine Wheel image. Walking in the Wellesley & Church Street area of Toronto, I noticed a Land Acknowledgement on top of a street sign.
While I do recognize that TORONTO is not in our township, examples of recognition are most welcome, wherever they grow.
In conclusion I request your consideration of TRC Resolution # 53-iv, and suggestions presented by MAAMAWI COLLECTIVE.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR INTEREST IN OUR PRESENTATION.
NOTE: The Township of Uxbridge has adopted a “Land Acknowledgement” to be read at their regular council meetings.