April 24th, 2018 Bi-weekly update

April 24, 2018

Dear working group members,

To continue to increase communication and understanding on the nature and scope of the Indigenization strategy work happening both in the working groups and in the Office of Human Rights, Equity and Inclusion includes:

  • Kelly Davis (Coordinator, Indigenous Strategy) has been busy continuing to engage with internal (Graduate Student Association, FAUW, FEDS and Staff association) and external stakeholders including (Six Nations Polytechnic, Grand River Post-Secondary Education Office, Conestoga College, U of T, Wilfred Laurier)
  • Kelly will also coordinate a debriefing/ reflection circle for the Indigenization Strategy members that experienced the local Six Nations cultural day trip.  We were fortunate to have a delegation of the Indigenization Strategy team share a Six Nations cultural experience organized in partnership with Six Nations Tourism and Six Nations’ famous Burger Barn.  Learning growing and breaking bread together is always the beginning of wonderful initiatives.
  • Kelly acknowledges that ‘our work’ is ‘at work’ in the steering committee and working group meetings.  This means that we have Indigenized all of the meetings with beginning and closing each meeting with a local Indigenous practice, whether it is smudging from our Anishinaabe neighbours or Cree relatives (Lori offering this) or the gathering of the ‘Good Mind’ through gratitude of our Haudenosaunee (Lead by Kelly) neighbours.
  • The steering committee (https://uwaterloo.ca/indigenization-strategy/steering-committee-members ) will focus on internal stakeholders that still ought to be engaged, the criteria of the external reviewers as well as working groups’ progress.
  • Members of the Human Rights, Equity and Inclusion team are working with the Waterloo Indigenous Student Centre to support and leverage the various educational and celebratory activities planned leading up to and on June 21- National (Aboriginal) Indigenous People’s Day (https://www.aadnc-aandc.gc.ca/eng/1100100013718/1100100013719 ) (More details to come.) 
  • Diana Parry, Associate Vice President, Human Rights, Equity and Inclusion, will participate and connect with each working group.  Diana also presented an update to: the Indigenous Advisory Council at St. Pauls- April 10th 3-4pm; National Indigenous day event planning meeting – April 12th 4.15-5.15pm; Staff Relations Committee presentation – introduction to the team and the different units- April 18th 9.30-10am
  • Each working group is in the process of organizing draft recommendations to present to the Steering Committee.  This process is co-facilitated by the chairs of the working groups, Lori Campbell (Resource) and myself (Coordinator) to actively review and compile the draft recommendations.

These updates continue to be on the Indigenous strategy website along with the other resources and information.  Please continue to send Kelly the information and resources.  Please feel free to share the website as a means of keeping the campus updated on the work associated with the Indigenous strategy.