[The above video is a NEW video that I just posted (3 June)]

This morning Saturday 1 June 2013, I and other from associated ILPS Canada organizations–including an Filipina indigenous woman–will be headed up to northern Ontario (four hours north of Thunder Bay) to work on a grassroots project led by the women of the Ojibway Nation of Saugeen.

She and I will not only be there to help with the project, but also to build bridges between the struggles of the First Nations and the Philippines–especially between our indigenous peoples.

Here’s a paragraph from the project press release:

Conditions on their reserve are intolerable. Members of the community face extreme poverty and homelessness, while mining and forestry companies profit off destroying their land and traditional food sources. In organizing to excercise treaty rights by building homes on their traplines off-reserve,  the group of women are led by Darlene Necan, a hunter and trapper, and spokesperson for off-reserve members.

We will be leaving the 30 degree daytime weather of early summer in Toronto for near 0 degree night temps in northern Ontario.  (My tropical blood is in minor dread.)

We will be leaving modern conveniences and live for two weeks on the land, without indoor heating or plumbing, without modern utilities–without the internet.  Even our cellphones will just be fancy alarm clocks as we will be outside the range of cell towers.

It will be just us and nature–though of course the capitalism that insists that they may take what it wants and the state forces that help facilitate the taking will be just around the corner.

It will be an eye opening experience.  And I am honoured to be a part of it.

While I have experience with this sort of work in the Philippines, in Canada this will be a first.  Stay tuned, I will be posting regular updates (by heading to  the nearest town a couple hours away every few days).

And if you are interested in donating to this cause it would be very much appreciated:  CLICK HERE

For images from the site from an early group that left on Thursday: CLICK HERE

For the Facebook group page on the project: CLICK HERE

*note that we are very happy to have reached the initial baseline goal of $5000 that will cover just the costs of the cabin build, but we are still taking in donations to help support the community, and hopefully to help defer some of the other costs in this project.  Thanks!


An image from the site.