Peter White Goes To Hudson’s Bay Store

By: Allan Crow

Our mama, Kathleen Crow, use to tell us the story of how her father, our grandfather Peter White, went to the Hudson’s Bay store when he was a young man. I can relate to the story of  my grandfather. Possibly many youth today can also relate as they leave home to attend universities for a better life.

He was still single at the time,  just before the 1900s. The store from where we are today known as Whitefish Bay was located far into the north in Hudson Bay, Saskatchewan, nearly 1,000 kilometers away.  In that time, there were no roads anywhere in the land. The railways had appeared at that time, but nowhere near our area.

My mother had many sisters and brothers; she remembered well the story their father told them.  It was in the summer their father told them that he told his parents he was going to that store way up in the north.  He knew his parents were worried but they did not say anything; they told him to be careful. The store was so far away and it would take a long time to reach it.

He had left alone that summer from the small community, taking only his small rifle and a knife to hunt for food as he went.  Peter said he was lucky he met another young man on the way, and that he too was heading to up north to go see that store they had heard so much about.  They knew it was a company that bought beaver pelts from the natives, and other wild animal furs. Peter and the other youth agreed they would split whatever money they made from the trip.

They collected many pelts along the way.  Although it was cold when the winter came and the terrain was harsh, the young men did not encounter any hardships for they were young, strong men.  They were adept in making shelters, and setting up camp a few days at a time, hunting beavers to sell. The young men took time to prepare the pelts; drying the skins and making pemmican from the meat.  The tools they made along the way were snowshoes, sleds, and bows and arrows.

Still winter, the young men bought horses to carry the food and tools they bought from the Hudson’s Bay Store.  My grandfather, Peter White, returned back home in the summer. He had been away all winter. His parents and the community members were so happy to see him coming home.  He had brought lots of food for the people, salt, pepper, sugar, flour, tea, and coffee. He had also brought hunting tools for the men.

His parents cooked and had a feast that evening with the whole community.  Everyone was so happy.

 

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Travel Club Holds the Community’s First Zombie Race

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Students run in preparation for the upcoming chase (Photo Credit: Karli Zschogner)

By: Drayston White

On Halloween, the newly created BaiBomBeh High School Travel Club hosted an event called the Zombie Run. In this event, the high school students dressed with face paint to look like a community of  zombies – a zombie apocalypse.

The elementary students who participated were prepared, scared and eager to run away from zombies outside who could steal their lives away, and the ribbons they had on their clothing.

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Virginia Loon in a close call with Zombie, Connor Kakeeway (Photo Credit: Karli Zschogner)

The point of this event, a great idea of high school teacher Jordan Marchand’s, was to raise money for the club. All community members were welcome. Prizes included a Samsung tablet. The club was also able to raise some funds through a canteen and bake sale.

Zombie Race - Hayzn Tom (Photo Credit: Karli Zschogner)
Zombie Race – Hayzn Tom (Photo Credit: Karli Zschogner)

As a travel club member, I though the event was a lot of fun!

The travel club is hoping to raise enough money to travel somewhere interesting and fun. Some of the places that we have discussed are New York, Orlando or Vancouver. The current plan is to travel in May, 2019. We will continue to host fun events and fundraisers in the upcoming months, including through the sale of our community newspaper, Naotkamegwanning Mazina’igan.

We hope to see the community participate and support our enriching cause.

New Group Provides a Safe Space for Women to Build Their Confidence in Speaking

Naotkamegwanning Arena housed some much needed giggles and encouraging applause.

Toastmasters-Karli Zschogner
Front: Darlene Oshie, Rolanda Wilson, Marilyn Leask, Rose Mary Paypompee, Darlene Paypompee Back: Laura Kakeeway, Patricia Biggeorge (Photo credit: Karli Zschogner)

By: Patricia Biggeorge

Ikwewag Toastmasters Club began in the community of Naotkamegwanning in October 2018 at the request of a couple of ladies in the community. Darlene Paypompee was approached because she has been a toastmaster member for a few years.

“I saw a need in the community, and every other community, to learn how to speak in public, conduct meetings, to gain confidence to speak up, to work or join in various committees, and I wanted to support them,” she said, “So, I decided to organize Ikwewag Toastmasters Club where women (Ikwewag) could learn these skills in a social and safe environment.”

Toastmasters is an international network in communication and leadership development.  Some people may wonder why it is called ‘Toastmasters’. Founders of the YMCA realized that a space for encouraging better communication was needed. The name resembled a banquet with toasts and after-dinner speakers.

A Facebook page titled ‘Ikwewag Toastmasters Club’ was launched in early October. Local Indigenous women, 18 years and above, are invited –  not just in Naotkamegwanning, but anyone from neighboring communities.

The first two practices happened in the last two weeks with a minute to speak on a table topic chosen randomly. The ladies chose the topic based on a theme for the meeting. The seven women discussed with each other on how even speaking improv for one minute was exhilarating and they already felt safer and confident.

Darlene said there will be a poll on the Facebook page so that members will have an idea on what to say. The long term goal is to build enough skill and confidence to be able to speak without filler words such as umms and ahhs for 5 minutes. The clubs’ support builds research skills and the ability to speak on a certain topic with confidence.

Joining the club inspires the development of ten goals within a person on public speaking. These are evaluating one’s own speaking ability, preparing and giving speeches, giving impromptu talks, controlling voice, vocabulary and gestures, giving constructive feedback, building confidence, sharpening leadership abilities, improving improvisation, expanding networks, and sharpening speaking, listening, understanding and thinking skills.

It is up to the individual as to when these goals are achieved. The individual can compete in speaking competitions at the regional, national or international level. Membership in the Toastmasters Club provides this small Indigenous community an opening to the rest of the world.

If interested, women can join the Ikwewag Toastmasters Club Facebook page, and are encouraged to sit in on the bi-weekly meetings  starting at 6:00 pm. While the club is for 18 years of age and over, there is the opportunity to start a club for those under 18 years of age, or come to the next meetings.

Membership allows access to regular tips, magazines and competition. Registrations are being accepted, but until a membership of 20 is reached, the club cannot register to confirm its unique bilingual status with Anishinaabemowin.

Chopping Wood for Elders Video Making

By: Hayzn Tom

I had so much fun making this video from start to finish to finish.

It was on October 11 our first snow day of the season from my Grade 6 class at Baibombeh Anishinaabe School.

I went to the Chi Key Wis Arena and found the journalism trainer Karli Zschogner. There were volunteers outside chopping wood for houses.

I hope you enjoy the video.

 

An unexpected space of truth and reconciliation at Naotkamegwanning roundhouse

In recognition of Orange Shirt Day, Hockey Hall of Famer speaks at Indian Horse screening

By: Xavier Ranville and Wynter Taylor

It was a chilly last evening of September when Naotkamegwanning’s roundhouse was filled with more bodies than it has had in a long time – dedicated to residential school survivors.

The 40 plus community members and guests of all ages enjoyed traditional foods as wild rice and bannock before sitting down for the big screen and local George Kakeway’s similar story of residential school survival through hockey.

“Be who you are because that’s how you survive,” said Kakeway in discussion after the award-winning film adaption of the novel by the late Northwestern Ontario’s Anishinaabe Richard Wagamese.

Indian Horse, follows the fictional Anishinaabe character Saul, and his experience at residential school and his talent through hockey. The story captures many of the realities of racism and ill treatment Indigenous persons have faced.

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Kakeway as the only Indigenous boy played hockey in Kenora, later attending Assiniboia Residential School with later Assembly of First Nations National Chief Phil Fontaine (Photo Credit: Wynter Taylor)

The film left many people in tears touched by the story, either seeing for the first time on screen the real experiences of their loved ones or because they had no idea of this part of Canada’s history and what they went through.

Like many adults and elders like Wauzhushk Onigum First Nation’s George Kakeway, the story of Saul and his peers was very much a reality.

“As a survivor it becomes very hard to express what we went through,” he said in the community discussion.

George was taken from his home in 1951 at the age of 6.  He talked about his time at St. Mary’s Catholic Residential School in Kenora, that his hair was cut bald and punished for speaking Ojibwe. He expressed that this place, along with its sanitarium, was one of the loneliest places.

“The intent was to assimilate us, not to educate us,” he said.

Like character Saul, he was an orphan at age 10, and hockey had come available for him and he excelled, not just out of interest but a method of survival from experiences.

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George Kakeway said he would use hockey and other sports to get it out of your mind and survival. (Photo Credit: Wynter Taylor)

He said hockey gave him the opportunity to chose to go to Winnipeg’s Assiniboia Residential school which let him study and also gave him time to play hockey. His focus led him to become the chief at his home at the young age of 25.

In October of last year George and his team were inducted into Manitoba’s Hockey Hall of Fame.

September 30, Orange Shirt Day is not just the last day of the month but a national movement, and proposed national holiday of sharing residential school experiences. It remains a hard day for many elders to relive and share, taking courage.

Kakeway Indian Horse Screening Poster
Indian Horse Screening Poster (Photo Credit: Karli Zschogner)

While having heard about residential schools, Judi Cannon, a non-indigenous attendee, was overwhelmed to learn about what was going on inside and outside of the residential schools.

“I can’t even believe it would happen,” she said.  “I don’t understand how people could treat other people that way.”

Cannon, Director of Ontario SPCA for Partnerships and Community Outreach, along with her crew were invited into the community for their second year extraction of unaccounted for dogs.

Event was put on by the community’s journalism trainer and the community’s Women’s Shelter.

Naotkamegwanning Mazina’igan – October 19, 2018 – Issue 1

Naotkamegwanning First Nation’s (formally Whitefish Bay) first newspaper
1. Cover Photo Feature Credit: Roland White
2. Letter from Co-editor – Karli Zschogner
3.the first times harvesting a deer – Ocean Sky Tom
5. An unexpected space of truth and reconciliation at Naotkamegwanning roundhouse – Xavier Ranville & Wynter Taylor
8. Naotkamegwanning’s Hanisha Singers take a national stage in supporting families of missing and murdered – Roland White
11. More than just beauty – Okima Paypompee & Ozaawaa Paypompee
14. Noatkamegwanning fishing derby dedicated to passing of local resident – Damon Hunter
16. Baibombeh Anishinaabe School messages
18. Baibombeh Anishinaabe School – What is Nominal Roll? – Ian Crow
19. Everything You Need to Know: Cultural Camp – Kelly Kavanaugh
20. Baibombeh Anishinaabe School – Grade 1
21. Baibombeh Anishinaabe School – Grade 2 & 3
22. We Can Do Better – Virginia Loon
23. Why are Baibombeh students not getting work done? – Xavier Ranville
24. Anishinaabemowin Workshop -Roland White
25. Elders-in-Residence: Betty Tom – Ozaawaa Paypompee

Noatkamewanning Hanisha Singers take a national stage in supporting families of missing and murdered

People of all ages shared a space of healing through a red jingle dress pow wow held in Winnipeg followed the five-day MMIW Inquiry.

By: Roland White

Families could feel the powerful shivers down their spine as Teddy Copenace solo lamenting song to missing and murdered indigenous women. The Red Jingle Dress pow wow, dedicated to the tragic missing and murdered women and men, was held at Winnipeg’s Lavallee School October 6.

“In’de dabajiitoon gi-nagamowan. (I sing from the heart.) Niminwendan apane gi-nagamowan owe nagamon (I feel good every time I sing this song.)”, says Copenace.

Teddy and Leslie Copenance an Tommy Hunter
Teddy Copenace, Leslie Copenace and Tommy Hunter (Photo Credit: Roland White)

Copenace says him and the rest of the Hanisha Singers volunteered to come to this event to help honour and support families in the healing process.

He describes the particular song, “Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women” on the groups titled album ‘Remembering & Honouring Our Lost and Stolen Sisters’ before he sings. Woke up crying, he says it came to him as a dream of a girl who was in distress and trying to reach out to him but he was unable to help her.

Jingle Dress Dancers
Red Jingle Dress Dancers (Photo Credit: Karli Zschogner)

He explains his wife told him to go outside a make a fire and put tobacco down. While outside, the wind blew and he heard a voice say, “ogimaa- ikwe.” Afterwards he put down tobacco, he heard the leaves rustling like jingles and a voice saying again, “ Okijiichidaa-ikwe  was the one you were dreaming of.”

Desirae Paypompee was one of the red jingle dress dancers that came to participate in the pow-wow. Currently living in Winnipeg, she is originally from Naotkamegwannng First Nation.

Desirae Paypompee
Desirae Paypompee, originally from Naotkamegwanning First Nation, joined as a jingle dress dancer and the Winnipeg pow wow. (Photo Credit: Karli Zschogner)

She says it was a pleasant surprise to see her community members partake in the event.

“It was very healing,” she says. “It made me feel apart of something big.”

She says she feels responsible for educating her son about respect. She says she believes that like the Orange Shirt Day movement, youth and adults should be educated about this horror.

“I do have relatives who have lost their loved ones and I also have friends within the city who have lost loved ones also,” she says.

Jingles Dress Dancers - Roland White
Jingle Dress Dancers dance to help heal the pain (Photo Credit: Roland White)

The organizers including Walking Little Bear Candace Arrow expressed gratitude to the Hanisha Singers for dedicating their time and energy in attending the MMIW pow-wow.

She says she started planning this event in February for a space for healing and unity for the affected families. She says the process ended up something much more.

“It kept me clean, it kept me driven and kept me focused” says Arrow.

Organizer Candace Arrow watching female drum group
Organizer Walking Little Bear Candace Arrow watches female drum group (Photo Credit: Roland White)

She says has experienced both sides, being a supporter for children and youth at Red River College, and as a victim and survivor.

“I was nearly taken. I was 14. I was lured by alcohol and the man took me to the river,” she says. “Who knows what he could of done with me. I jumped out of the moving car.”

She was getting very emotional and teary eyed.

She says out of principle, she kept her budget costs below the small missing persons rewards offered for finding missing indigenous girls.

She says she was overwhelmed by the large turn out, raffle and food contributions and considers having it next year.

“If I do have it next year, it’s going to be in every province,” she laughs.

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