Presentation on theme: "Nenan Dane_Zaa Deh Zona Family Services Society. translation “All of Us People working together for our Families” combines three Athapaskan languages."— Presentation transcript:
Nenan Dane_Zaa Deh Zona Family Services Society
translation “All of Us People working together for our Families” combines three Athapaskan languages Nenan Dane_Zaa Deh Zona
The name, selected by our 14 member Nenan Board of Directors, has profound meaning as it is inclusive of the Beaver, Slavey, Cree and English dialects of the First Nation and Aboriginal peoples of the Northeast. This symbolizes and evidences our historic coming together in the establishment of an Aboriginal Authority that will enable us to reclaim our inherent right and responsibility for decision making and service provision for our Children, Families and Communities.
Nenan Dane_Zaa Deh Zona - Geographic Service Area Treaty 8 Nations
The Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) presently has the legal responsibility and authority in regard to child protection and support services to the First Nation and Aboriginal peoples of the northeast. The Ministry initiated a Transformation Agenda with the introduction (circa 2006) of new Deputy Minister, Lesley Du Toit, and identified as a guiding Vision statement, "Aboriginal peoples exercising their rights to jurisdiction over their children's well-being, through self- determination, have strong and healthy children, youth and families."
Nenan representatives met with Ms. Du Toit and MCFD officials in the summer of 2007 to discuss our historic and unique coming together as First Nations and Aboriginal peoples and our unwavering self-determination and unequivocal goal of reclaiming jurisdiction and decision- making for our children, families and communities through our establishment of an Aboriginal Authority for the northeast.
Nenan was successful in receiving support from the Ministry for assuming all work associated with establishing an Aboriginal Authority that will enable us to reclaim our inherent right and responsibility for our children and families in a manner that respects and builds upon our traditions and culture, and which also recognizes and honours the diversity of our communities and peoples.
We will establish an unprecedented new level of accountability with our peoples and communities as we assume jurisdiction and the provision of services. Our Board of Directors are from our communities and have strong existing knowledge and relationships with our peoples which will be a strength in making informed decisions related to the best interests of our children.
Additional support was secured from Dr Phillip Cook, William White, and Vanessa Currie of the International Institute of Child Rights and Development (IICRD). Nenan was introduced to the Triple "A" Community Empowerment engagement process and has received training in the Pre-Assessment and Assessment phases from the IICRD team
Nenan's Board Of Director's and designates are presently engaging the respective target groups (i.e. Children, Youth, Parents, Elders, Key Informants) in each of our communities in the "Assessment" process phase. This is for the purpose of identifying the cultural assets and strengths existing in each of our distinct communities. "Action Plans" will then be developed that are informed and build upon our community strengths."
Nenan has embraced the Child Rights approach in planning for the creation of a new child protection response and support service delivery model that builds upon the Convention On The Rights Of the Child, notably, Article 30. Nenan will empower and give agency to our presently untapped resources and strengths which are our culture, traditions, and the wisdom and guidance of our esteemed Elders.
Our governance and cultural and traditional practice institutions enabled our peoples to thrive on the landbase of the northeast for over 10,000 years (i.e. an archaeological site at Charlie Lake, adjacent to Fort St John, has been determined to be dated just over 10,000 years). First contact with non-Indigenous peoples occurred in 1793 when Alexander Mackenzie led an expedition through our area en route to the Pacific Ocean. This is only 215 years ago.
In 1899 seven of our Nations of the northeast signed Treaty 8 with the governments of Canada. At that time, our Peoples did not have any children "in care“, as our children were protected and nurtured within the guiding context of our respective cultural and familial institutions.
A sad and tragic history followed which witnessed deleterious efforts perpetrated upon our peoples including such actions as: colonization and displacement from our traditional lands, disruption of our traditional ways of life, residential schools, 1960's adoptions (aka "60's scoop"), and coercive harmful policies and legislation (Indian Act) intended to assimilate our peoples.
What Followed In Relation To Child Protection There are currently 146 Children and Youth in some form of Ministry care in the Northeast. 115 are of First Nation and Aboriginal descent which equates to approximately 71 % of the in-care population being from our peoples and communities. The Aboriginal year ago population is approximately 22 % of the total overall 0 – 18 population in the northeast (i.e. 4,139 of 18,262 total).
Nenan believes in the agency of children and youth to play a key role in helping to inform the development of a new Child Protection response and they are actively being engaged and empowered via the Triple "A" Assessment process.
Walking Tour activity with the children of the West Moberly First Nation
Youth Photo Framing Empowerment Assessment (Feb 20, 2008) Background: Interview with Louie Wokeley, Halfway First Nation Youth Vanessa Currie "So, can you tell us about some of the good things that make you feel good in your life?“ Louie Wokeley " I love my gramma more than anything. She makes me feel safe and she means everything for me. She doesn't drink." Allen Cummings "Does she live here in Ft St John?“ Louie Wokeley "No, she lives in Halfway”. Vanessa Currie "Can you tell us about some things you like to do?“ Louie Wokeley "Soccer, and hunting. I love going hunting on the weekend, for moose or mostly elk with my mom (Sherry). This weekend we're going to go. I get to cut, cook and eat. My gramma makes dry meat, is good stuff!"
Grounding A New Child Protection Response In a Cultural and Traditions Based Approach An Old Path... Back To The Future
We believe strongly in the child rights centered approach where our children are supported in enjoying and practicing their respective culture and language which is integral to their healthy development and our respective community well-being. We are intensively engaging our Elders to learn and re- establish the agency of our culture and community assets that served our people so well in the past, so that we can develop a new Child Protection system which draws upon these strengths for our future.
"Klin-se-za" Also known as the "Twin Sisters," is a twin peaked mountain of profound spiritual and cultural significance. The mountains are sacred for the peoples and are a place of protection, sustenance and well-being in times of challenge.
Nenan Dane_Zaa Deh Zona Family Services Society Thank you for taking the time to view this presentation.