Story from the Waterloo Region Record, September 23, 2017. As part of the conversation surrounding intergenerational trauma and reconciliation, seven female leaders from different parts of Waterloo Region’s Indigenous community share their personal healing journeys.
Understanding begins with conversation.
Storytelling has been used throughout history as a way to exchange knowledge. As an explorer of Indigenous well-being, Maria Shallard believes true reconciliation lies in building cross-cultural relationships and connecting different world views to the environment.
"See that plant? That was once food, and it spoke to the people that lived here for thousands of years. The land and water hold the memories and stories of those who were here prior, and our responsibility is to make sure that it is here for future generations," she says.
"It's frustrating when you see that that respect has been lost, or a relationship has been damaged."
As Maria looks out across the water, many stories come to surface about relationships to the land, and the necessity to protect it not only for the well-being of Indigenous people, but for the well-being of us all. [...]