Wikwemikong's Josephine Mandamin honoured for conservation excellence
A First Nations elder who has "walked the equivalent of half the earth's circumference" to build awareness about pollution, laws, fracking, and the selling of the water, is being honoured today in Toronto.
Josephine Mandamin received the Lieutenant Governor's Ontario Heritage Award for Excellence in Conservation at a ceremony held at Queen's Park.
Anishinabek Nation Grand Council Chief Patrick Madahbee said Mandamin, who hails from Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory [also known as Wikwemikong First Nation], has walked the shorelines of five Great Lakes as well as in all four directions of Turtle Island.
"She takes care of the Lifeblood of Mother Earth – water."
Mandamin herself said she "will go to any lengths to and direction to carry the water to the people."
"As women, we are carriers of the water. We carry life for the people," she stated in a news release.
"So when we carry that water, we are telling people that we will go any lengths for the water. We'll probably even give our lives for the water if we have to."
Mandamin is one of seven recipients of the award for volunteer contributions to the conservation of community heritage over a period of 25 years or more.