Sunday February 07, 2016

Building an ally: non-indigenous people share their stories of bridge building

David Suzuki, third from the right, joins Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, centre, and other protesters at the Site C protest camp at Rocky Mountain Fort.

David Suzuki, third from the right, joins Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, centre, and other protesters at the Site C protest camp at Rocky Mountain Fort. (Yvonne Tupper/Facebook)

Listen to Full Episode 46:57

What does it mean to support and stand with the indigenous community?  Some non-indigenous people have been viewed as an ally, but what does it mean to them to be a cross-cultural bridge builder?

His name is synonymous with the environmental movement. David Suzuki has been a long time ally to indigenous peoples across the country. But it was an encounter with Haida artist and activist Guujaaw, 30 years ago, that changed his view about the environment. 

John Ralston Saul is an award-winning novelist and philosopher. His latest book, The Comeback, takes a look at Canada's treaties with First Nations, and indigenous rights.  

Monique Woroniak

Monique Woroniak says the Idle No More movement inspired her and others to create groundworkforchange.org. (CBC)

You can call her a quiet revolutionary but Monique Woroniak's day job is as a librarian. She is also the founder of a website that offers information and connection between non-indigenous and indigenous communities.

Our teachers can have a lasting impact on how our youth perceive the world. But who teaches our teachers how to teach? Verna St. Denis is an expert in anti-racist approaches in education. A big part of her research focuses on the benefits of developing ally relationships between indigenous and non-indigenous teachers. 

Elizabeth Gouthro is passionate about education as well, incorporating indigenous knowledge in primary and secondary schools in Calgary. Last year she received a partner in indigenous education award from Indspire, a non-profit organization that invests in the education of indigenous people.

 

Don Amero

Don Amero. (Scott Senior)

This week's playlist

​Don Amero and Brett Kissel - Rebuild This Town 

Little Hawk - Six Nations

stories from this episode