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Indigenous Innovators: Igniting Change from Within

March 21, 2017

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Ginger Gosnell-Myers, Vancouver's first ever Aboriginal Relations Manager, talks with Jordyn about issues of identity and belonging. Ginger is Nisga’a and Kwakwaka’wakw and now lives on the traditional territory of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Peoples in Vancouver. Before joining the City of Vancouver, Ginger was a key advocate for Indigenous youth; she was an Action Canada 2004 Fellow, a former Co-Chair to the Assembly of First Nations National Youth Council, and a former President of the Urban Native Youth Association.

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Animikii’s Indigenous Innovators series features Indigenous leaders, activists, artists and entrepreneurs to better understand the challenges and opportunities Indigenous Peoples face in Canada today.

 "At the end of the day, if our Communities grow and are strengthened, it’s going to be because we took a lot of chances."

- Ginger Gosnell-Myers

In this episode, Jordyn and Ginger discuss issues of identity and belonging - especially in the context of urban Indigenous people - and about how to create bonds and a sense of place wherever you find yourself as an Indigenous person. They also talk about Vancouver’s efforts to become a “City of Reconciliation” and the City’s year-long response to Canada 150, called Canada 150+. Canada 150+ seeks to recognize and celebrate the Indigenous people who have been living on the land called Canada, since time immemorial and acknowledges the fact that the history of this land did not start at Confederation.

During the discussion, Ginger brings in lessons from her time as a youth advocate as well as wisdom she’s gained from working within the Government to create positive change in Vancouver. Listen to this latest episode to learn about Ginger’s role in the “City of Reconciliation” and her advice for bringing about positive change for Indigenous people - even in colonized environments.


Guest Bio

GingerGinger is the City of Vancouver’s first Aboriginal Relations Manager where she is central to advancing Vancouver as the world’s first official City of Reconciliation, and is working across all City departments to bridge Aboriginal policies, programs and relations. Key to this work is implementing the Truth and Reconciliation Commissions Calls to Action, and strengthening the relationship between local First Nations, the urban Aboriginal community, and Reconciliation Canada. Throughout 2008–2011 Ginger worked on the Environics Urban Aboriginal Peoples Study as both Project Manager and Public Engagement Director. The UAPS is Canada’s largest research study on Aboriginal people living in urban environments, and has become the leading research on urban Aboriginal people’s values, aspirations, experiences, and identity. She has facilitated and spoken at several provincial, national and international events, including the International Indigenous Women & Wellness Conference, the Senate Standing Committee on Aboriginal Peoples, and the United Nations Permanent Forum of Indigenous Peoples. Ginger is featured in the inspirational book: Notes from Canada’s Young Activists: A Generation Stands up for Change (2007). In 2012 as part of the CBC documentary series “8th Fire”, Ginger was highlighted and profiled for her views on Aboriginal issues and relations in Canada. Ginger is an Action Canada 2004 Fellow, former Co-Chair to the Assembly of First Nations National Youth Council, former President of Urban Native Youth Association, and sits as a Board of Director for the Inspirit Foundation.


Host Bio 

JordynJordyn Hrenyk is a Dean’s List graduate of the Gustavson School of Business at the University of Victoria. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from 2015.  Jordyn’s professional background is in Indigenous entrepreneurship education research and curriculum design; specifically, in supporting Indigenous entrepreneurs in the development and execution of their business and project ideas. Jordyn is Métis and white and is a member of Métis Nation Saskatchewan, Local #7.

Dakota2Dakota Lightning brings Animikii's projects to life by making them look great, work across all platforms and are a delight for users to interact with. As our resident front-end expert, he is responsible for delivering engaging experiences through the latest web technologies. Dakota is a member of the Samson Cree Nation and lives and works on Vancouver Island.

Article published March 21, 2017.

March 21, 2017

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