One of my favourite places on the Canada C3 ship is the Legacy Room. It is the first room of its kind in Canada and is an intentional and sacred space to discuss Reconciliation and ReconciliACTION. The idea for the room came from Nova Scotia Assembly of the First Nations Regional Chief Morley Googoo, who partnered with the Gord Downie and Chanie Wenjack Fund to call upon organizations and business across Canada to create spaces for reconciliation.
We were incredibly fortunate to have Chief Googoo share his vision for the Legacy Room and participate in discussions about reconciliation when he joined us on Leg 4 in Halifax. In addition to housing a collection of First Nations, Inuit and Metis artwork and ceremonial items, the room is a place to reflect, share, discuss and process thoughts and conversations about reconciliation.
I had many meaningful moments and conversations in the Legacy Room. A few of these interactions focused on an item I brought with me on the journey to share with other participants: a painting that was created by a very talented young artist who has a ReconciliACTION message to share. Continue reading “The Legacy Room”
Yesterday, we were honoured to attend the Miawpukek Powwow and met Saqamaw Misel Joe, Chief of the Miawpukek First Nation (also known as Conne River, Newfoundland)
Chief Joe visited the ship and spent time with us in the Legacy room where he offered a gift of a handmade birch bark canoe. After the Powwow Grand Entry, Chief Joe took us on a medicine walk in the woods where we also saw the Birch bark canoe building workshop.
After a long (and bumpy) journey through the night, we arrived at Mistaken Point, a new UNESCO heritage site which is home to some of the oldest fossils ever found on earth. We are just waiting for the Zodiacs to take us to land… which we can’t see through the thick fog!
On Friday night we set sail from Sydney to begin the Atlantic crossing over to Newfoundland. Big water = Big Waves. Although I enjoyed the rolling seas, several people on the C3 were hit hard by the motion so it was a quiet day on board. I took the opportunity to head out to an upper deck to ride the waves and take some photos.
It was simply amazing to watch the Polar Prince cut through the wind and the waves. As it crashes through each wave I could see the many different colours of the sea. The fog was really thick so there wasn’t a lot to see but I knew we must be getting close to land as we where scheduled to arrive by around 2 pm.
Tracy joined me around 1:30 pm and when I pointed out what looked like clouds on the horizon we suddenly realized it was actually waves hitting the shoreline, and then suddenly, there it was in front of us.
It could have been a scene out of Lord of the Rings or Game of Thrones as we entered into a channel and the seas calmed.
It. was. amazing.
Waterfalls, lush greenery and rugged rocks welcomed us into Francois (pronounced Fransway) – and outpost that was established in the 1800s. It is now home to 73 people, including 9 children.
We were welcomed by the Mayor, Austin and another town official named Aubrey and we set off to explore the town followed by a hike that led us way up above the town.
This was followed by a pot luck dinner in the town hall and a night full of music, storytelling and dance.
It is a day I will never forget.
We pulled up anchor around 12:30 am to begin the journey to Conne River where will be attend a Pow Wow celebration and dinner. I can’t wait!
We are having fun with science on the C3! Is there anything we aren’t doing on this expedition? I love it!
From collecting water samples to learning about Oysters we are doing it all today. At Eskasoni Wildlife and Conservation Centre and Microbiota we learned about harnessing the oceans natural potential through algae, bacteria and viruses. So much to absorb I am trying my best to make notes so I can study later on.
“Promoting the development of viable commercial markets for renewable and sustainable commodities derived from algae”
I am with a C3 group that is visiting Eskasoni, a Mi’kmaq First Nation and had an amazing cultural journey of Goat Island.
Huddled along the Bras d’Or Lakes in Cape Breton’s center, there is so much history, and culture. I was so captivated by the heart in this region. I learned that Eskasoni is the largest Mi’kmaq community in the world. Eskasoni has a proud history of supporting its youth with events that promote a healthy and active lifestyle, including The Red Road Project.
I am overwhelmed by how many new experiences I have been privileged to be apart of. Yesterday, we met all the amazing people involved in Hope Blooms.
Hope Blooms is a non-profit organization, whose mission is to empower at-risk youth to be actively engaged in building environments that directly impact the social determinants of health in their communities.
It was so inspirational to see what these amazing young people have done and achieved. I look forward to seeing them again tonight on the Polar Prince. #C3Wave
We are in Canso, NS at Stanfest – The Stan Rogers Folk Festival!
The first photo is the Polar Prince going through the Canso strait, then we had a wonderful tour and reception at the local museum. Troy and Jenny Rogers told us about the history of the festival and gave us VIP passes to enjoy the music. #C3Wave