Riverside Park in Guelph is hosting an event to mark National Indigenous Peoples Day – Guelph
National Indigenous Peoples Day is celebrated across Canada on Tuesday, including in Guelph.
Riverside Park will hold an in-person event on Tuesday in recognition of the day.
The event will be hosted by Adrian Harjo and will feature music, dance, stories and more.
Stephen Jackson is the CEO of Anishnabeg Outreach in Guelph. As an Indigenous person, he said he was proud to see other cultures celebrating together.
“That’s what I’ve been working towards for four years at Anishnabeg Outreach. It’s cultures coming together to embrace it, understand it and participate in it,” Jackson said.
He believes being together and working together is how they achieve a different outcome.
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National Indigenous Peoples Day allows Canadians to learn about and celebrate the heritage, culture and unique contributions of First Nations, Inuit and Métis.
Anishnabeg Outreach is a non-profit organization, with offices in Guelph and Kitchener, that provides Indigenous peoples with access to culturally appropriate services and works to help and guide individuals to overcome barriers .
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Through its programs and initiatives, the organization emphasizes Aboriginal peoples and their culture.
“I think everything we do is designed to do proactive work,” he said. « It’s the healing that’s probably the most important element because without healing you really can’t work, your family situations can be abusive and your relationships can be toxic. »
Jackson said that with healing you are able to put trauma behind you and work towards the future.
Initiatives offered at Anishnabeg include an EarlyOn centre, employment and skills training, a mental health management system and a multi-sport program.
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The event in Guelph is organized by local First Nations, Inuit and Métis leaders with support from the city’s Museums and Culture Division. The day also coincides with the summer solstice.
He said it would give friends and families a chance to connect after the COVID-19 pandemic and allow people to celebrate in more ways.
« I’m so grateful that events like this are available for those who want to connect with family and friends or make new friends and family, » he said.
Jackson added that the outreach center will also host a barbecue on Tuesday afternoon with its staff and community partners. Visit the Anishnabeg Outreach website to learn more.
The event at Riverside Park will begin at 5:30 p.m.