In the last several years, I have been realizing the need to look at what can been done for “reconciliation” in Canada. It’s pretty clear that for a lot of people, reconciliation is a word untied to any action. It’s become an empty word spoken by the general public & especially politicians. I don’t want to be that person. It’s long past time to step up. As part of my commitment, over the past couple of years, I’ve worked with Dawn Marie Marchand a Cold Lake First Nation and Metis on the Shared Skies Project (BTW…We’re still looking for a corporation or organization to step up and support the project).
An important part of reconciliation is making sure Indigenous folks have access to land. Author & educator Chelsea Vowel @apihtawikosisan has started a fundraiser to help purchase land in the Lac Ste. Anne area of Alberta which is her traditional territory. One of the goals of the project is to provide art residency spaces for Indigenous artists and I want to do my part to help with this as a settler on Treaty 6 territory. I don’t have cash to support the effort but I do have some artwork that I can auction off so that is what I will do.
If you are a settler artist and would like to contribute a piece for this effort, send me an email [email protected]
- The auction closes at midnight September 15th, 2019
- The winning bid will be notified and will have 72 hours after notification to pay.
- Payment will be made through the fundraiser page (not this website)
- Once proof of payment is sent to me, arrangements to pick up or deliver the piece will be made.
- IMPORTANT: Shipping if required is NOT included in the auction value. Depending on where there successful bidder is, shipping costs could be up to $100 so please take that into consideration. Local pickup or delivery in the greater Edmonton area is available at no cost.
From the fundraiser site.
Métis in Space are landless Métis, who want to build a feminist Indigenous compound, on the land, to ensure that our Indigenous LGBTQ and Two-Spirit kin are centred, and have access to land, teachings, ceremony, and community. This has been a goal of ours for a very, very, very long time, but we simply do not have the means to buy a parcel of land in Lac Ste. Anne county, which is within my traditional territory.
Thus, the Back 2 the Land: 2Land2Furious LandRaiser! We are reaching out to settlers in particular to help us secure a piece of land; fee simple, not borrowed or leased. We need to ensure that we will continue to have access to this land for generations to come. We want to be able to buy a quarter section of land, 160 acres (or a bit less if someone has carved out an acreage and is selling the bulk of the land off). A house on the land would be a bonus, but is not at all required. Alternatively, someone with land to give, could sell it to us at a nominal fee.
We are inspired by projects such as Nimkii Aazhibikong, a year-round Ojibway Art, Culture, and Language Revitalization Camp, built by community, for community, and without government or corporate funding. We want to build communal living spaces, a cook shack, and spaces for ceremony, ensuring that these spaces are all accessible for our kin with mobility issues. We envision this as a permanent space for language and culture learning, capacity building that is, in our opinion, the only way future generations will be able to cope with the massive, deleterious climate disaster that is already upon us. Rather than building an exclusive, individualist, and xenophobic “prepper” community, we are digging deep down to create a community based on principles such as wâhkôhtowin (expanded kinship), and miyo-wîcêhtowin (living in harmony together).
As Eve Tuck and K. Wayne Yang (the folks who put together the Land Relationships Super Collective) wrote back in 2012, Decolonization is Not a Metaphor ! Decolonization requires ensuring that Indigenous peoples have access to LAND, so that we can form and maintain relationships with one another, and our non-human kin. For more information see the blog .
If we end up being gifted land, we will use funds raised to dig a well and buy building materials.