Building Bridges event helped dispel harmful myths and stereotypes

The land-based learning experience brought newcomer and Indigenous youth to gain a greater understanding of each other

Among the trees and crisp fall air in Little Mountain Park, a unique event was held to dispel harmful myths and stereotypes.

Building Bridges brought together youth from the urban Indigenous and Newcomer communities to gain a greater understanding of each other. They shared in a land-based learning experience and traditional Anishinaabe (Ojibway) and Ininew (Cree) teachings related to smudging, traditional medicines, and the sweat ceremony.

Together, the youth built an outdoor lodge structure and participated in a sweat ceremony inside where they were encouraged to pray, share their thoughts and feelings, or just remain quiet if they chose.

“The whole idea of Building Bridges is for the youth to get together, learn about each other, and hopefully realize that they aren’t that different from each other,” said Cecil Sveinson, Manager of the City’s Indigenous Relations Division.

We hope the event helped construct a bridge between the two communities toward reconciliation.

In all 10 youth, invited from Ka Ni Kanichihk and Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization of Manitoba Inc. (IRCOM), took part in the October 2022 event. It was put on by our Indigenous Relations Division and Community Services’ Community Development Division as part of our anti-racism in action initiatives.

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