J4Iw 2023-2024 Funding Partner announced

top image:peparing the site for Turtle Island’s first ever 2Spirit Sundance

Justice for Indigenous Women is thrilled to announce that our new funding partner for 2023/24 is Two-Spirit Manitoba!

“You’re not alone on this land, you know you’re not alone ever, like somebody said: ‘There’s a thousand ancestors behind you, just walking with you and kind of nudging you, you know.’ That’s the reality of what we’re trying to do.” A quote from Metis Elder and Kookum, Barbara Bruce.

Justice for Indigenous Women (J4IW) is honoured and thrilled to support Two-Spirit Manitoba (twospiritmanitoba.ca), based in Treaty 1 territory and the Homeland of the Red River Métis Nation.

Under the leadership of 2Spirit Métis and First Nation Kokums and Elders Barbara Bruce, Charlotte Nolin and Dr. Myra Laramee, 2Spirit Manitoba is creating and hosting the first-ever 2Spirit Sundance on Turtle Island, which brings together 2Spirit community and allies in a multi-day land-based ceremonial gathering. 

For four days they gather in ceremony and practise cultural and traditional ways of life. Sundancers, singers, helpers, and supporters dance, sing, fast and feast for healing of the people, communities and nations. 

“The whole initiative is bigger than only the Sundance, because we want it to be a place where 2Spirit can come together at any time during the year, and come to be together and talk, to heal and pray together, and have ceremonies and workshops. It’s a chance to teach them about land-based education: to teach them how to make drums, how to make rattles, how to make all kinds of things, and bring back their spirit and uplift them so that they can live miyo-pimatisiwin (the good life)… We’ve been wanting this for years and years and years. And now we have an opportunity to make this a reality,” says 2Spirit Métis Kokum Barbara Bruce

Moe Clark, a 2Spirit community member and invaluable representative on the J4IW Governing Circle states, “This initiative is so important as it gives access to the 2Spirit community to learn in an intergenerational, land-based setting and engage in cultural practices in a safe space that is inclusively made for 2Spirit kin. As a Métis person, it also feels like a homecoming since it’s happening on the Red River Métis homeland, just outside of Winnipeg near Portage la Prairie. The camp is partially set-up, with a new kitchen and the arbour (dance area) is almost fully built. There are still many needs, including a roadway, camp supplies, a refrigerator, running water, food, outhouses, travel, and support for the Elders.” 

To kick off the 2023-24 Campaign, J4IW is participating in a fund-raising event happening June 25. For families living in unceded Algonquin Territory in Ottawa, you can join this fun activity to make it into the Guinness Book of World Records, and, support J4IW at the same time! Click here for details.