SSHRC: Launch of new tri-agency Indigenous Research Capacity and Reconciliation—Connection Grants

The new tri-agency Indigenous Research Capacity and Reconciliation—Connection Grants invites proposals from applicants affiliated with First Nations, Métis and Inuit not-for-profit organizations, as well as with other not-for-profit organizations or Canadian postsecondary institutions in any discipline.

The initiative will support short-term targeted interdisciplinary events, outreach activities and position papers to help guide new ways of engaging in research by and with First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities. This will include holistic, interdisciplinary and distinctions-based approaches that are transformative and contribute to reconciliation.

These Connection Grants are valued at up to $50,000 for six months, with the possibility of a six-month extension. The leadership and governance of all proposed projects must involve the participation of First Nations, Métis or Inuit communities.


Conceptualizing the Role of a Strategist for Outreach and Indigenous Engagement to Lead Recruitment and Retention of Indigenous Students –

A number of universities have introduced Indigenous student-specific programming to improve recruitment. These programs target the needs of Indigenous students and often impart a sense of comfort or belonging that may be more difficult to obtain in a mainstream program. The University of Saskatchewan, College of Nursing, implemented a Learn Where You Live delivery model that challenged the university community to think differently about outreach and engagement. This is best described by redefining distance such that student services and supports would no longer be localized to a main campus but redesigned for distribution across the province. Sustaining this model meant the College leadership had to find new ways to support faculty to engage in teaching and learning opportunities that would be context relevant and aid student recruitment and retention.

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RCMP: National Indigenous Peoples Day – Read about some of our projects and initiatives

The RCMP has a proud history of more than 140 years of service to First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities. Today, we work in more than 600 Indigenous communities across Canada. Read about some of our activities and initiatives.

An Eagle Staff to honour and acknowledge First Nations people in Canada
Staff Sgt. Jeff Poulette constructed this sacred Indigenous symbol for the RCMP.

Maskwacis Intervention – Collaborative Approach Reduces Gang Violence
Violent crime and school absenteeism was a big problem on some Alberta reserves – until they employed a unique solution.

Survival Skills – Outdoor camps bridge gap between youth, police
Outdoor programs in B.C. are helping Indigenous youth learn new skills, and bond with local police.

Contest Inspires Northern Youth to get creative
When the RCMP in the Northwest Territories needed a new Aboriginal policing ensign, they reached out to local students to try their hand.

New Blanket Exercise on Indigenous History moves RCMP Cadets
A “Blanket Exercise” on Indigenous history has been added to the mandatory training for all RCMP Cadets.

Eagle Feather flies into Nova Scotia Detachments
Instead of a bible, Indigenous people can now use an eagle feather to swear legal oaths in RCMP detachments and courts.

Local officers, staff and youth complete Pulling Together Canoe Journey
RCMP members from Surrey, B.C. took part to help build relationships with Indigenous communities.

Indigenous Youth Return from RCMP National Youth Leadership Workshop
This Workshop, held since 2011, teaches leadership skills to Indigenous high school students.

NHL Star, RCMP Score with Anti-Violence Ad
NHL player Jordin Tootoo teamed up with the RCMP on a video to prevent violence against Indigenous women and girls.


Celebrating a Canadian first: The Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada –

The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, Nellie Kusugak, Commissioner of Nunavut, leaders representing First Nations, Inuit and the Métis Nation, Indigenous artists, and John Geiger, CEO of The Royal Canadian Geographical Society, kicked off celebrations for the launch of Canadian Geographic’s long-awaited Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada.

This was a Canada 150 project funded by the Government of Canada and for the Honourable Mélanie Joly, the Atlas will make a positive contribution to Canada’s educational landscape. “For years to come the Indigenous Peoples Atlas of Canada will help build capacity for open discussion, empathy and mutual respect, as well as act as a powerful educational tool to help facilitate the renewal of Canada’s relationship with First Nations, Inuit and the Métis Nation,” said the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage. “There is no relationship more important to our government than the one with Indigenous Peoples, and we are proud to have contributed to this important initiative.”

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Saskatchewan Research Council Expands Mentorship Program for Indigenous Post-Secondary Students

June 21, 2018

Today, the Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) is formalizing the expansion of a mentorship program for Indigenous post-secondary students, while at the same time celebrating the success the program has seen in its first four years.

Through SRC’s Aboriginal Mentorship Program (AMP), First Nations, Inuit and Métis post-secondary students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) can connect with an SRC mentor in the same or similar disciplines and gain work experience through a hands-on summer job at SRC.

“The Government of Saskatchewan is dedicated to supporting training initiatives, like this one, that foster learning and development,” Minister Responsible for SRC Jeremy Harrison said. “This program assists Indigenous students training for rewarding careers in the science, technology, engineering and math fields.”

Since its inception in 2015, fifteen students have been welcomed into the program – two of which accepted permanent, full-time employment with SRC upon graduation and are still with the organization today.

“SRC is proud to continue fostering Indigenous participation in the STEM disciplines through our Aboriginal Mentorship Program,” SRC Mining & Minerals Vice-President Craig Murray said. “Because of both our mentors and students’ efforts, along with the support of our partners, this program has achieved significant success in just three short years. To be able to expand on that will help to ensure this program’s continued future success.”

Through a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between SRC and the University of Regina, both organizations will work collaboratively in the promotion of this program to students in the Regina-area. Additionally, a second MOU between SRC and Gabriel Dumont Institute Training & Employment will help guarantee funding for Métis students in the program for the next three years.

“We are very pleased to be partnering with the Saskatchewan Research Council in support of Indigenous students engaged in science, technology, engineering and math programs,” Provost and Vice-President (Academic) Dr. Thomas Chase said. “The focus of the MOU on connecting Indigenous students with employment, training and mentorship opportunities with SRC is aligned with our 2015-20 Strategic Plan priorities of student success and Indigenization.”

“This partnership with SRC’s Aboriginal Mentorship Program has been successful in supporting Métis students in STEM disciplines to learn and grow both academically and personally,” Gabriel Dumont Institute Executive Director Geordy McCaffrey said. “To date, six Métis students have participated in the program. Five have graduated with engineering degrees and found employment. The sixth, an Industrial Systems Engineering student, has just started the program.”

AMP is proudly supported by SRC’s Technology-in-Action Fund – a perpetual memorial fund created by the late Ian and Pearl Wahn to support Saskatchewan’s entrepreneurial spirit. It also receives financial support from the Government of Canada through the Gabriel Dumont Institute Training & Employment, Saskatoon Tribal Council and Regina Treaty/Status Indian Services.

SRC is one of Canada’s leading providers of applied research, development and demonstration (RD&D), and technology commercialization. With more than 350 employees, $70 million in annual revenue and 71 years of RD&D experience, SRC provides services and products to its 1,500 clients in 20 countries around the world. For more information, view SRC’s website at

The University of Regina—with campuses located on Treaty 4 and Treaty 6 territories, the ancestral lands of the Cree, Saulteaux, Dakota, and Lakota nations and the homeland of the Métis—is a comprehensive, mid-sized university that traces its roots back to the creation of Regina College in 1911. Today, more than 15,000 students study within the University’s 10 faculties, 25 academic departments/schools, 18 research centres and institutes, and three federated colleges (Campion College, First Nations University of Canada, and Luther College). The University of Regina has an established reputation for excellence and innovative programs that lead to undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees. In 2017, the University of Regina was ranked in the Top 200 Best Young Universities in the world by Times Higher Education.


For more information, contact:

Rebecca Gotto
Saskatchewan Research Council
Phone: 306-385-4199
Cell: 306-371-2127

Everett Dorma
University of Regina
Phone: 306-337-8451
Cell: 306-565-8608


How a new wave of Indigenous cinema is changing the narrative of Canada – CBC

Indigenous filmmakers keen to tell fresh stories themselves, but funding still hard to come by

Jun 21, 2018

It’s being called the “new wave” of Indigenous cinema.

Indigenous filmmakers got a boost in 2018 with the creation of the Indigenous Screen Office, an organization helping Indigenous media makers develop their content.

The National Film Board is also doing its part, by allocating 15 per cent of production spending to Indigenous-directed projects and launching a massive free online library of more than 200 films by Indigenous directors.

Three of the leading voices in Canada’s Indigenous cinema scene sat down with The National to talk about the new cinematic wave and its cultural impact:

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Protest teepee back near Saskatchewan legislature days after ordered taken down – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Jun 21, 2018 

REGINA _ To the sound of beating drums and applause people put up a teepee outside the Saskatchewan legislature only days after the government ordered it taken down and police arrested Indigenous protesters.

The Justice for our Stolen Children camp was set up in February after the acquittals of Gerald Stanley in the fatal shooting of Colten Boushie and Raymond Cormier in the death of Manitoba teen Tina Fontaine.

Both victims were Indigenous.

The Saskatchewan government said it ordered the removal of the camp over safety concerns.

The six people who were arrested by Regina police on Monday have since been released.

The teepee was set up again following an event marking National Indigenous Peoples Day. (CTV Regina, The Canadian Press)


First Nations School Holds Competitions to Display Learning in Robotics from RoboYOU Program

June 20, 2018

The results of five months of learning robotics, computer coding and digital literacy skills were shown today in competitions by students at the Cowessess Community Educational Centre.

The games marked the end of the pilot run of Innovation Saskatchewan’s RoboYOU program launched in February 2018, to provide First Nations students in rural communities with exposure to robotics for learning, creating and playing.  Eighty-five students from Grades 5-9 in both the Cowessess Community Educational Centre and Chief Kahkewistahaw Community School completed the RoboYOU program, which provided them with experiential learning in programming robotics—giving them the opportunity to explore their creativity, solve problems and enhance their critical thinking skills.  Participants in both schools received certificates at the completion of the program.

“Every day, technology is transforming how we live, work and play,” Minister Responsible for Innovation Saskatchewan Tina Beaudry-Mellor said.  “With so much change happening so quickly, government is working hard to ensure that all children have access to learning the skills of the future and to make them more comfortable with technology as they develop the skills they need to succeed.”

Developed with assistance from the Ministry of Education, various schools as well as science and technology consultants from school divisions in Saskatchewan, one of RoboYOU’s objectives is to expose students to learning and career opportunities in the science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM fields.

“As Saskatchewan’s technology sector is growing, so too is its need for skilled workers,” Beaudry-Mellor said.  “A focus on STEM education is vital and will help prepare students for numerous career opportunities in the province’s future.”

With the completion of the RoboYOU pilot, Innovation Saskatchewan will review the program and determine the next steps going forward.


For more information, contact:

Deb Young
Trade and Export Development
Phone: 306-787-4765


Saskatoon bridge to be named for Indigenous leader Chief Mistawasis – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Jun 21, 2018 

SASKATOON _ A bridge in Saskatoon could be named after Chief Mistawasis, known as a visionary Indigenous leader.

The steering committee for the north commuter parkway bridge, which is to open in October, says it would be an appropriate way to honour the historical contributions of Indigenous people.

Chief Daryl Watson of the Mistawasis First Nation said the bridge symbolizes people coming together.

“That bridge today represents that opportunity where we can walk collectively across to a new opportunity that brings prosperity to everybody,” he said.

The announcement on the recommendation was made Thursday before the Rock Your Roots Walk for Reconciliation and National Indigenous Peoples Day celebrations in Saskatoon.

The final recommendation for the name will be presented to city council in August for formal approval.

Mayor Charlie Clark said the purpose from the start of the naming process was to let residents choose the name.

“This was about the community,” he said. “The whole intention … (was) to name the bridge in the spirit of reconciliation.”

Chief Mistawasis, also known as Pierre Belanger, was considered one of the most visionary northern plains Indigenous leaders. He played a major role in Treaty 6 negotiations in 1876.

Another bridge in Saskatoon was recommended for renaming earlier this year, but city councillors decided not to change that one.

Some suggested Traffic Bridge should be renamed as the Truth and Reconciliation Bridge.

At the time, officials with the city said changing the name would require more public input.

Traffic Bridge was officially named in 2007 in celebration of the Centennial Year of the Bridge. (CJWW/The Canadian Press)


Saskatchewan MP ‘hopeful’ bill marking Indigenous Peoples Day a holiday passes – CP

Source: The Canadian Press
Jun 21, 2018 

OTTAWA _ A Saskatchewan MP isn’t giving up in her bid to make National Indigenous Peoples Day a statutory holiday.

A private member’s bill introduced by NDP MP Georgina Jolibois was stuck at second reading when the House of Commons rose Wednesday for the summer break.

But Jolibois isn’t giving up the fight to make June 21 an official holiday.

Jolibois says as an Indigenous person and member of Parliament, she remains “hopeful” that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will support the bill when debate on it resumes in September.

In the meantime, though, Jolibois _ who represents the riding of Desnethe-Missinippi-Churchill River _ says she plans to mark today’s occasion in any event.

Jolibois says she sees National Indigenous Peoples Day as a way to honour and respect Indigenous language, culture and heritage, and that awareness of the day increases every year.


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