This month our theme is Reconciliation. In the process of putting this together it became clear to me that we need to focus on two aspects of the theme. Since my first taste of reconciliation as a young reporter covering then Indian Affairs Minister Jean Chretien, the focus has mainly been of treaty rights and addressing the colonial and early Canadian atrocities carried out against First Nations peoples. This in now shifting to the problems faced by individuals within the indigenous communities such as the Residential School abuses. However, this is what I would refer to as the negative aspect of the situation. The other side is the positive – the social and social/emotional and artistic contributions that indigenous people have made and are continuing to make to Canadian Culture. This issue of the newsletter is attempting to cover both the negative and the positive.
The ultimate purpose is to reach as many people as possible with the hopes of saving lives with resonance and connection to powerful poetry and personal transformation experience.