Ojibway Youth Gathering

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Ojibway Youth Gathering

“Success has to come from within. You have to create your own journey for yourself and your future children.”
“I stayed in school even though all my friends were dropping out. I just decided I could do it.”
“Never give up. You have the strength to be who you want to be.”
“Use your language to pray.”
These were just some of the words of advice shared by presenters at the Ojibway Youth Gathering in Brokenhead First Nation, March 11&12. Sponsored by the MFNERC language and culture department, these youth gatherings are held throughout the province during the school year, for First Nations young people to get together and learn about who they are and where they come from. Also, about what’s important for their futures.
Approx. 40 students, Grades 7-12, from neighbouring First Nations were chosen to take part in this gathering, and the two-day event saw many presentations, hands-on activities such as ice fishing, and sharing circles.

Role model and teacher, Desirae Anderson from Ginew School.

Community role models like teacher Desirae Anderson from Ginew School and Chief Clifford Bruce were eager to share their knowledge with the young people. “Moving to the city to attend university was really scary at first,” stated Desirae. “But I promise you, it gets easier!”

Participants were also given a demonstration of the BYKI (Before You Know It) program by students from Brokenhead First Nation. This classroom tool, developed by MFNERC, is an interactive software program that is used by language teachers to teach the First Nations languages.
The young people who attended were very attentive to the speakers and presenters, and perhaps the young Junior Chief from Lake Manitoba First Nation summed it up best when she said, “I’m excited to take back to my community the things I’ve learned from this conference.”

Student from Brokenhead First Nation demonstrating the BYKI (Before You Know It) – Ojibway – language program.

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