I have a lot of blessings to smile about when I think about being nehiyaw, a Cree person.
Smiling is an act of gratitude and connection, and there are so many blessings I am grateful for as a nehiyawiskwew (Cree woman). The act of introduction in nehiyawewin (Cree language) is a reminder of the physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual response that evokes a smile (pahpiwânâkosiwin).
Continue reading Remembering our past helps us learn and plan Sharing our connections with gratitude and a smile
June is LGBTQ Pride Month. For many people in our city, it is a time for celebration and showing pride in who they are.
The Edmonton Pride Festival has become one of the largest festivals in Edmonton, drawing nearly 40,000 people to the parade alone. Edmonton’s Pride Festival, June 3 to 12, is officially endorsed by the city and attended by both the mayor and premier. Last year, even the future Prime Minister Justin Trudeau marched in the parade.
Continue reading Taking the time to foster inclusivity Thanking those who broke down walls
Through the Sinkunia Community Development Organization (SCDO), Issa Kamara has translated a passion for helping his community in Sierra Leone into helping his adopted community of Edmonton.
Everyone in Kamara’s rural hometown supported him as he completed his bachelor’s degree. In 2000, he moved to Canada and completed a master’s degree in social work. In 2008, Kumara started Sinkunia as a way to return the support he had been given throughout his life. His hometown now boasts wells, a community garden, and a community ranch through his efforts.
Continue reading Helping immigrants settle and integrate Organization helps African immigrant youth and families make Edmonton home
Wesley Andreas has set his mind on beautifying and connecting the communities that surround Alberta Avenue. He’s focusing on the alleys in particular.
“We thought maybe we could do something more colourful,” he said. Andreas is the founder of the Animate the Avenue Alley project. He started last year with a project on his own fence and garage. “We had been wanting to paint our garage anyway, so we used it as an opportunity to do something interesting with our garage painting, rather than just repainting it white.”
Continue reading Beautifying communities and alleys People needed for local Animate the Avenue Alleys project
Sebastian Barrera is a doer. Despite obstacles, he finds a way to make projects he has a vision for happen.
On April 21, he received the Courage to Innovate Award at the Mayor’s Celebration of the Arts for his work on the KinArt Ravine project, a series of more than 60 murals lining the Kinnaird Ravine trail.
Continue reading Recognizing art, courage and innovation Sebastian Barrera receives award for his work on KinArt Ravine project
“Every single Cameroonian knows two things. First thing: how to dance. The second thing is how to play soccer,” says Raymond Kampoer, beaming with pride.
Kampoer moved into Parkdale two years ago with his wife Micheline and two children. During the upcoming Cameroon Day celebrations, his rich, diverse culture will be on display in Edmonton.
Continue reading Celebrate Cameroon’s culture on May 21 Enjoy a day of dancing, soccer, and food
Artists from the Nina Haggerty Centre for the Arts gifted Alberta Avenue Community League with a colourful multimedia art installation representing the community.
Created by six painters and 12 clay artists who work at the Nina, the installation depicts unique houses in the Alberta Avenue neighbourhood.
Paul Freeman, artistic director of the Nina Haggerty, said “the aim of the centre has always been to broadcast work in the public space and an opportunity for other people to see what the artists at the Nina can do.” He explained the artists “want to make a concrete contribution to the local reality,” and that “good art connects your experience to my experience.”
Continue reading Connecting local art to the community Nina Haggerty’s beautiful installation has a home at Alberta Ave Community League
“If you can dream it, it is possible.”
This is the vibe that I pick up from speaking with Keia Dreger, director and creator of Mythos, A Springtime Fair, which will be held April 21 at Alberta Avenue Community Centre.
Dreger created the festival out of a need for artists and artisans to “have an opportunity to learn, express, showcase themselves, network, create conscious community, gain exposure.” Dreger is also an artist. She works in a variety of mediums and has designed some dividers, which will be for sale at the fair.
Continue reading A new springtime event on the Ave Alberta Avenue welcomes Mythos, A Springtime Fair
If you have spent any time at Alberta Avenue festivals, you have probably been mesmerized by Sangea, a high energy, colourful, and talented African drum and dance troupe.
I bumped into them at the Carrot during Black History Month. Their commitment to their craft, vision and values triggered my interest in culturally diverse communities. I jumped at the opportunity to interview founders Reckie Llyod and Erini Perez Amezcua about immigration, music, and artist lifestyle.
Continue reading The importance of keeping your culture Local drum and dance troupe talk about their experience and vision
On March 15, a diverse group of community members gathered in a sharing circle to tell their story of how they came to Edmonton.
Organized by the Edmonton Heritage Council (EHC), Weaving City Narratives was held at Ben Calf Robe – St. Clare School. The event was created to help people to find a sense of hope and belonging in Edmonton.
Continue reading Telling the tale of the city’s collective story Edmonton Heritage Council initiative helps Edmontonians find hope and belonging