While the Family Rookie League has more than proven the benefits of activities that involve the whole community, not everyone likes sports.
Bring in visiting artists – dancers, actors, musicians, painters, poets – to work with community members who want to explore their creativity. Start an annual Pow Wow that travels to a different community each year.
Much research directly links the high rates of depression, substance abuse and self-harm among Indigenous people to the loss of cultural identity over generations. Of 4,200 people, less than 40% still speak Ojibwe, a language that has been silenced for decades. As Elders age, less and less of their knowledge is being passed on to the next generation.
Teach community youth to speak Ojibwe so that they can immerse themselves in their ancestors’ teachings and traditions. Develop land-based learning programs that involve people of all ages in Anishinaabe ceremonies and traditional activities, from canoe-building, story-telling, drumming and dancing, to healing with ceremony, fishing, trapping, and harvesting traditional medicines.