CRE Delegation Updates

Blog Updates

Thursday, February 27, 2020

That’s a wrap!

SOI’s CRE delegation spent their final day together Tuesday reflecting on their time at the gathering and looking ahead at how they can bring their conference experience back to their communities.

Through various workshops the youth reflected on opportunities to lead initiatives that support their communities, such as film screenings, land-based programming, Inuktitut classes and more!

Tuesday evening ended off with a sharing circle. Conversations were focused on the value of attending the gathering together as Indigenous and non-Indigenous folk and going into the experience with a supportive community of like-minded peers. The delegates left with feelings of empowerment, inspiration and with a positive outlook, knowing that there’s others like them doing good work in reconciliation.

As the group settles back into their communities they will be creating blogs to reflect on their delegation experience and discuss what action they will be taking moving forward.

Stay tuned for updates!


Monday, February 24, 2020
Today is the last day of the gathering so our delegates made the most of it. A major theme of the day was looking ahead and how we can plan for the next 7 generations.

 The delegation had the chance to surprise a future #SOIArctic2020 participant! Riti Nowroz happened to be attending CRE so instead of giving her a call to offer her a scholarship, we were able to surprise her in person with an SOI proposal. She said yes!

Delegates surprising future alum with an SOI proposal

Monday ended off with a Montreal alumni meet-up! Alumni spent the evening reminiscing about their experiences with SOI, looking ahead and where they are now and making new friends amongst the SOI network!

Montreal alumni meet-up featuring alum from the Arctic, Antarctic and C3 expeditions from years 2008-2019!

Alumni Present:
John Gertler, Vivian Lee, Raphael Dury, Louis-Philippe Dury, Olivia Rempel, Shaziana Kaderali, Nicholas Castel, Megan Dicker, Kathy Snowball, Danielle Wendehorst and our delegation!

Sunday, February 23, 2020
The delegation got to choose their own adventure for the day and participate in a variety of events and workshops offered at the gathering. Students on Ice had a booth at the conference. Each delegate shared their experiences with SOI, during and after expedition.

Perhaps, one of the hardest challenges faced by our delegation was picking between all the cool workshops offered. To name a few: Ask-Me-Anything with Nunavut MP Mumilaaq, Building Solidarity among Indigenous and non-Indigenous Youth, Realities of Indigenous Peoples in Quebec, and All my Relations. 

Kim Mathieu participating in a workshop © Thomas Steur

No one could predict how incredible the Talent Show was going to be on Sunday evening! A few performances even featured many talented SOI alum, including Kathy Snowball, Denver Edmunds and Thomas Steur. A perfect evening to a fulfilling day.

Saturday, February 22, 2020
Ready, set – conference! Today is the official start of the gathering and after yesterday’s pre-conference programming, our delegates are more than ready to get to work!

The first day was a pretty extraordinary one – it began with SOI running an Isuma workshop where there were multiple stations. Isuma means “to think, or a state of thoughtfulness” in Inuktitut. Kim’s station was journaling, Mataya led beading, and the music station could have been three stations in itself. Heidi taught throat singing, Denver & Tiivi tag-teamed on teaching Inuit drumming and Thomas brought his musical energy (check out his EP on Spotify)! #SOIArctic2019 alum Kathy Snowball also joined in on the music workshop!

Tiivi & Denver demonstrating Inuit drumming as part of SOI’s Isuma workshop © Thomas Steur

Reflecting on the day, our delegates felt that their Isuma workshop was a fun and creative way to connect to other people.

Some other workshops our delegation participated in included Inuit Climate Story, Pass the Mic: Media Training for Activists, Indigeneity: A journey of identity, and Centering Indigenous Youth in Policy and Research. Our delegates will each write blog posts about their experiences at CRE, so if you’re curious about what they learned and talked about check back in post-conference!

Friday, February 21, 2020
SOI’s delegation to the Canadian Roots Exchange (CRE) National Gathering arrived in Montreal yesterday! This delegation of 8 Indigenous and non-Indigenous youth SOI alumni from across Canada will participate in a week long immersive learning experience. 

Delegates from left to right;
Back row: Denver Edmunds, Thomas Steur, Tiivimasiu Qisiiq & Tyler Rowe.
Front row: Mataya Gillis, Kim Mathieu, Heidi Lucas & Kassidy Augustine.
©Thomas Steur

As part of SOI’s delegation, these youth are engaging in a pre-gathering program to connect with each other, to the place that the Gathering is being hosted – TiohTià:ke – and to begin connecting to the Gathering topics as a team. 

Pre-conference Programming
What does reconciliation mean to us? What are the challenges we are facing right now? How do we participate at a conference? How can we lean on one another as a team?

These are examples of questions discussed on the days leading up to the CRE National Gathering. Pre-conference programming is incredibly important in making sure our delegates feel confident discussing certain topics, know what to expect during the conference and build strong team dynamics! 

Heidi & Tiivi partaking in pre-conference programming © Thomas Steur

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