Collaboration Between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous Communities

Thursday, June 24 at 11:00 AM PT / 2:00 PM ET.

Across Canada, people are eager to learn how to be the best possible allies to Indigenous communities. Many local governments are exploring ways to collaborate with First Nations.

To help out, we’re bringing together a panel of experts to highlight some of the best collaborations happening between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities across Canada.

From establishing Vancouver as the world’s first City of Reconciliation, to promoting green energy and entrepreneurship in Indigenous communities, our speakers will share tips based on their real-life experiences.

Join us to learn more about:

  • How to become a better ally and build better partnerships with Indigenous communities
  • What collaboration opportunities exist 
  • Examples of successful collaboration

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Meet the Panelists

Ginger Gosnell Myers

Ginger Gosnell-Myers - SFU Fellow, Decolonization and Urban Indigenous Planning

Ginger Gosnell-Myers is a member of the Nisga’a and Kwakwak'awakw Nations has been bringing forward new perspectives of Indigenous peoples in cities for over 20 years, while breaking down misconceptions about urban Indigenous realities in order to reframe our understanding of both issues and opportunities.

This led Gosnell-Myers to become the City of Vancouver’s first Indigenous Relations Manager where she was central to advancing Vancouver as the world’s first official City of Reconciliation, and created the City’s reconciliation framework to ensure Indigenous identities and worldviews were respected and reflected in all City plans. Gosnell-Myers served as the Project Manager and Public Engagement Director for the Environics Institute’s Urban Aboriginal Peoples Study - Canada’s largest research study on Aboriginal people living in cities, focusing on their values, aspirations, experiences and identity – and challenged the largely held misconceptions holding up unjust assumptions and structures that further alienated this exceptional and fast-growing population.

Marissa Lawrence Headshot

Marissa Lawrence - Senior program officer - CEDI - Western Region

The First Nations – Municipal Community Economic Development Initiative (CEDI) aims to improve the economic prosperity of participating First Nations and adjacent municipalities through joint community economic development planning and initiatives. CEDI is a joint initiative of Cando (Council for the Advancement of Native Development Officers) and the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM).

Marissa has a rich background of designing and convening community-bridging intercultural dialogue and educational programming on topics ranging from democratic engagement, regional economic opportunity and citizen entrepreneurship, to reconciliation between Indigenous peoples and all Canadians. Over the past few years, Marissa worked with Reconciliation Canada where at a senior management level, developed and maintained strategic partnerships with both Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities, governments, and organizations, and managed the design and delivery of Reconciliation Canada’s national public programming.

Shaun Loney Headshot

Shaun Loney - Social Entrepreneur

Shaun Loney is the co-founder of: BUILD (Building Local Industries toward Local Development); Manitoba Green Retrofit; and, Aki Energy, which actively promotes green business and local economic development in First Nations communities, including apprenticeships for sustainable development – a model for similar initiatives across Canada.

Previously, Shaun was the government of Manitoba’s Director of Energy Policy working on the biofuels mandates and the expansion of both renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. Since leaving his provincial government role, Shaun, Shaun Loney has been dedicated to social entrepreneurship and sustainable energy on the ground in communities.

Ben West

Ben West - Co-director of the eDemocracy Network and the Carbon Budget Project

Ben is the Co-Director of eDemocracy Network and the eDemocracy Carbon Budget project. He is a leader in the climate space in Canada with over 20 years of experience in strategic communications and public engagement.

He was the founder and chair of The Great Climate Race, worked as a Healthy Communities Campaigner and Communications Coordinator for the Wilderness Committee, Campaign Director for ForestEthics (Stand) and as the Communications and Project Lead for Tsleil-Waututh Nation Sacred Trust Initiative.

Meet Our Host

Andrea Reimer-1

Andrea Reimer

Andrea Reimer spent four terms in local government including 10 years as the lead on public engagement on Vancouver City Council, where she also served as Deputy Mayor and Chair of Policy and Strategic Priorities. She recently completed a fellowship at Harvard in recognition of this work and is currently teaching about power, policy and engagement at UBC and SFU in Vancouver, Canada.

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