Word from the president

We must remember our history since “the arrival”. We have welcomed newcomers according to our values. We are Anicinabek. We had our way of life, our lifestyle. We were in harmony with our environment. The description that these newcomers gave of us is telling and surprising. Some people said that we were los in dios, “the children of God”! The Indians!

Afterwards, we became “less than nothing”.

These newcomers undertook a colossal task. They wanted all the Indians to disappear! Nothing less!

A “work-marathon”. Total and complete territorial dispossession: our territories, our rights, our institutions, our ceremonies, our rituals… And the final point of this work: the abduction of children from their families to residential schools.

This whole process takes decades. It gradually erases our memories and replaces them with colonization. We cease practicing the activities related to our way of life. New ceremonies, new rituals are being imposed on us. Finally, we are forced to adopt foreign languages. The words in Anicinabe slowly disappear. The effects of this process are devastating. It affects our souls! I now refer to these Indians as the “severely burnt souls”.

Culture, with the help of language, is one of the paths to healing. The return to the Anicinabe identity. We’re starting another marathon, that of recovery. This marathon is a huge challenge.
Ndeboedan!!!!! I believe it!

I have spoken! LOLL


Richard Kistabish