Trent University invites the community to join the walk on Mother’s Day May 8th and offer thanks to the water and bring attention to local water issues
The greater Peterborough community is invited to lace up their shoes this Mother’s Day and join the seventh annual water awareness walk to be held Sunday, May 8 starting at 6:30 a.m. at the tipi beside the First Peoples House of Learning at Trent University, Peter Gzowski College.
This year’s walk will honour Nibi (sacred water) and begin from Trent University and follow the Otonabee River down to Nogojiwanong – Little Lake and back again to Trent. The walk will begin early Sunday morning with a traditional water ceremony at 6:30 a.m. at the tipi. The total distance of the walk is approximately 20 km and will be followed by a potluck dinner at the Gathering Space at Trent University.
The community is invited to Aambe and join anywhere on the route, to walk for an hour or two or for the whole day, to honour Nibi and strive to bring a greater awareness for the need to have clean water for future generations and for all Creation.
“Mother’s Day is a day to celebrate our mothers and grandmothers as well as a time to remember and honour our Earth Mother and her life-giving water. Each Mother’s Day, the Water Awareness Walk brings attention to the necessity of clean unpolluted water for all people, animals and the environment,” said Shirley Williams, elder, professor emeritus at Trent University, and water walk spokesperson. “We’re looking forward to the greater community joining us as we offer thanks to the water while also calling attention to local water issues.”
The Water Walks are the vision of Liz Osawamick and Elder Shirley Williams who have shared traditional Anishinaabe water teachings with the Peterborough area for years through these walks. Grandmother Josephine Mandamin has been an inspiration for Anishinaabe Kwewag and supporters to take up the call to bring local awareness to our communities about the sacredness of Nibi and the perils that face the waterways, she will join the walk again this year.
In keeping with First Nations ceremonial protocol, women are respectfully asked to wear long skirts and men to wear long pants. It’s asked that pets remain at home. Children are more than welcome but must be accompanied by parents or caregivers. Food and water will be provided and breaks will be held periodically throughout the day. Police services and other support vehicles will follow the walkers to provide security and assistance.
There are many sponsors and donors who have supported this walk, including the department of Indigenous Studies, Indigenous Environmental Studies and the First Peoples House of Learning. For more information, visit the event Facebook page.
About First Peoples House of Learning
The First Peoples House of Learning (FPHL) is the home of Indigenous student services and Indigenous campus and community initiatives at Trent University. FPHL services are for all Trent University students, faculty and staff at both the Peterborough and Durham campuses.