Week of teaching and workshops to celebrate Indigenous Peoples

From learning to string a wooden lacrosse stick to listening to traditional teachings, a packed five days of events will honour the heritage, cultures and contributions of Indigenous Peoples at Brock University next week.

Hosted by Brock’s Hadiyaˀdagénhahs First Nations, Métis and Inuit Student Centre from Monday, June 19 to Friday, June 23, Indigenous Peoples Awareness Week (IPAW) will showcase 20 workshops and guest presentations, and is open to everyone, including those in the Brock and wider community.

Among the week’s highlights will be a ribbon skirt-making workshop on Monday, June 19 and Tuesday, June 20; a presentation depicting traditional Inuit life on Tuesday, June 20; mini Métis sash making on Wednesday, June 21; and an Indigenous youth circle and tie-dye workshop on Thursday, June 22.

The University’s Schmon Tower will also be illuminated in orange each night throughout the week.

With so many activities planned, Hadiyaˀdagénhahs Peer Assistant Sophia Carnovale said this year’s IPAW is set to be the best yet.

“We have planned hands-on workshops and guest presentations to make this week unforgettable,” she said. “It’s exciting to see the community respond so positively as we watch event registration numbers grow every day, especially because everyone is welcome to join us in celebrating and learning something new. We love welcoming new faces and sharing our traditional knowledge.”

Along with taking part in the workshops throughout the week, Carnovale hopes participants will also join in the end-of-week festivities on Friday, June 23, which include a feast in Jubilee Court and a vendor fair.

“We’ll be welcoming a big drum group back to campus for the first time since the pandemic to end the week with a round dance that features singing, dancing and playing instruments, while supporting local Indigenous vendors,” she said. “It’s a perfect way to conclude a packed week filled with education, celebration and fun.”

Robyn Bourgeois, Brock’s Vice-Provost, Indigenous Engagement, said she hopes everyone in the Brock community and beyond will take time to participate.

“IPAW is an opportunity to celebrate Indigenous excellence and for Brock folx to experience our ways of knowing and being,” she said. “Such experiences promote understanding and empathy that can contribute to decolonization and reconciliation.”

To learn more and register for the week’s activities, visit the IPAW Eventbrite page.

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