One of the projects beSuperior is working on currently is a Public Education Campaign with the support of OCASI for Thunder Bay with an Indigenous focus. This runs in line with the Truth and Reconciliation or TRC Recommendations and specifically in regard to Newcomers to Canada especially in building that understanding of the histories of Canada. This work will be rooted in Indigenous Methodologies and led with the guidance of Elder Ernie Kwandibens. We will build a campaign with the thoughts of relevance, respectful, relationality and reciprocity.
For this project, OCASI/beSuperior strives to tell a collective story that will be one of resilience and rooted in our strength and testimonies. Each and every story builds together to form this story. Each and every story builds together to form the Thunder Bay story.
Telling a collective story based on individual input and stories, will help to shape this project. “These stories contribute to a collective story in which every Indigenous person has a place” (Smith, 1999), which shares what Bishop calls “the life of the community.” Stories can inform in many ways, and for the city of Thunder Bay and really be about taking back place and space, as well as being a teaching tool for those in the project as well as the broader Thunder Bay community and at the national level.
Thunder Bay is a beautiful place many of us call home or come to for shopping or for health. We are raising our families here, and some of us on our second or third generation. We are not new to Thunder Bay. Many of our ancestors have been coming to the shores of Anemki Wajiw or Thunder Bay for centuries. The Anishinabek people have been in this territory since time immemorial, from Anemki Wajiw or Fort William First Nation.
There is much to share, and many challenges as well. There are ways, to tell the stories so we feel uplifted and can learn from each other. There are traditional teachings to pass on. There are safety stories we must tell. There are reasons for a public education campaign and many ways to have one.
This project aims to hear from a wide range of people, and in the form of a committee where the main ideas can be shared, and formed, and an amazing public education project will be built.
Thunder Bay is a hub of the north. There is so much to learn about this place we call home. How can we invest in a public education committee with our time in recognition that it is and can help build our future generations and lead to more caring and concerns, and love. Love is necessary.