Algoma U Hosts “Taking Care of Our Land” Symposium

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The Anishinaabe Initiatives Division (AID) and the Department of Geography and Geology at Algoma University are hosting the second bi-annual “Gdo Akiiminaan Ganawendandaan” (Taking Care of our Land) symposium from May 8th – 11th at the Delta Hotels by Marriot in Sault Ste. Marie. This year’s theme is Reconciliation.

The purpose of this symposium is to begin exploring the inclusion of cultural and traditional practices of land management, planning, and use for Aboriginal communities in Northern Ontario. The symposium will create opportunities for Indigenous and non-Indigenous scholars, as well as traditional knowledge keepers, to engage in dialogue about Indigenous thought while providing mentorship for students who are in the early stages of their engagement with research. The symposium aspires to foster a supportive learning community inclusive of all participants.

“There is a need to have more opportunities for the Aboriginal communities in Northern Ontario dealing with land issues. The symposium provides for the opportunity for presenters to come together and share their experiences, knowledge, and skills about the initiatives/projects they have completed, are in the process of completing or are in the planning and development stage,” said Judy Syrette, the Director of the Anishinaabe Initiatives Division.

The symposium will feature four keynote speakers, including Deborah McGregor, Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Environmental Justice; Maria Swain of Grassy Narrows First Nation; lawyer Sharon Venne; and Don Burnstick, who will be this year’s comedic banquet speaker.

Symposium presenters’ topics will focus on all areas of land stewardship. Presentations will include academic papers, posters, workshops, learning circles, and panel discussions.

A pre-conference workshop will be held on May 8th from 9:00am – 4:00pm with The Firelight Group, titled “Community Involvement in IBAs and Protecting your Heritage with GIS Work”.

To register or to find out more about the presenters, please visit the symposium webpages. Registration for the symposium closes on May 2nd. The symposium is open to the public.

For more information on the symposium, please contact Cheryl Jamieson at cheryl.jamieson@algomau.ca.

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