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just missed this one, but there will be more

From the UnifyToronto email Call for Participants – for a Monthly Event Series scarily but appropriately titled “Indigenize or Die”:

I.O.D #7

DEEPENING OUR EXPERIENCE:
REINFORCING OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE LAND
 AND PEOPLE

 Last month we had the pleasure and honour of being welcomed by Naadmaagit Ki Group (NKG), Helpers of the Earth, as our co-hosts, to A Celebration of Seeds Planted. Together we honoured and celebrated the efforts of NKG and many others at Emmett Avenue Communal Garden* who are doing the very important re-indigenizing work of reclaiming our food sovereignty.

For those who weren’t there, we had a marvelous tour of some of the re-indigenized orphan lands, with the plant medicines and food plants arranged according to the teachings of the elders. We learned how families from the Indigenous community are adopting lands and working in relationship to maintain their adopted area for the generations to come. We also learned about the sophisticated technology traditional of the mounds for the three sisters companion planting that predate permaculture by thousands of years.

We also shared some delicious food provided by the participants, and we danced, sang and told stories around the fire. Special thanks to Kevin and Doug who organized, to the Indigenous community members who tended the lands, and to Moyo and his son for the beautiful African music.

This month, we will continue the experiential path we have embarked upon. On July 27th we will have the opportunity to work alongside the NKG group to experience and learn together in our evolving connection with all creation. We’ll have a chance to get to know each other and the place, tell a few jokes, listen to the land, make ourselves useful.

There’s lots to see and learn together.

Come out and help when you can get there (we’ll start about 4, but even if you come at 6 that will help) until 7 or 7:30, then we’ll share a meal.

Wear long pants and shoes with socks, as there’s some poison ivy and worse…  

  • Wednesday July 27, 101 Emmet Ave (directions below)
  • 4-7 pm: digging, conversing, planting, joking, listening, getting to know each other.
  • 7:30-9:30 pm: Potluck Picnic and Circle
  • $15 suggested donation to cover travel and other expenses of our guest hosts.
  • Students/unwaged PWYC. No one turned away for lack of funds.

Please bring:

  • your own plate, cup and utensils
  • a potluck picnic dish to share
  • lawn chair and/or blanket if possible

How to get there:
The event will take place at 101 Emmett Avenue (near Jane and Eglinton), accessible by TTC via buses from Jane Station or York University (35 or 195 express) to Jane and Eglinton + 8 min walk, or Eglinton West Station (32 D takes you right to the site). Check the TTC Trip Planner for bus times and routes and Google Maps for more directions.

By car: Emmett Avenue runs North off of Eglinton, West of Jane. There’s a big sign at Eglinton and Emmett saying West Park Health Centre. Turn N on Emmett and go down the hill. Stop at the first parking lot on your left, There is a children’s playground across the street on the right. The communal garden is behind a fence just South of the playground, and North of the public washrooms. We are gathered in front of it by some picnic tables.
Note that the parking lot closes at 9 pm.

*The Emmett Avenue Communal Garden is a cooperative venture involving NKG, the Black Farmers Collective, the Afrocentric School collective, Social Planning Toronto, City of Toronto Parks and Recreation, and communal garden volunteers. Grown communally rather than in individual plots, the garden is used for sustainable food production and distributed to low income families as a contribution to food justice. NKG have been reclaiming the area in an around the Humber (Tanaouate) River, including in this Garden, restoring indigenous responsibilities to the land and water, and supporting indigenous cultural learning on the land in the city. They are growing Three Sisters mounds (corn, beans and squash), a sophisticated and sustainable system that will provide long-term fertility and a healthy diet, in a generational project that will see families taking up responsibility for the mounds for Seven Generations.

“Indigenize or Die” is honoured and excited to be building a collaborative relationship with these front-line warriors who are on the ground, doing the re-indigenizing work about which we have been dialoging.
For information on previous sessions in the series, see www.unifytoronto.ca/events.

The NKG self-identify as a group that “focuses on the popular restorative use of urban lands based on indigenous principles, knowledge and practices”. From their ABOUT page:

All our activities are mutually supportive.  Everything we do is connected.

  • Eco-Restoration
    • We return disturbed lands and waters in Toronto to a healthy balance, in ways that restore, maintain, protect and develop historical indigenous ecosystems for future generations.
  • Plant Nurseries
    • Our nursery sites include outdoor church gardens and greenhouse spaces, serving as places to learn and grow new plants.
  • Indigenous Cultural Regeneration
    • Our activities support urban indigenous people to learn and practice our cultural traditions, as the basis for reconnecting with our communities and the natural world around us.
  • Learning Opportunities
    • We provide places to teach indigenous values and ways of life and link with certification for our stewards through accredited learning agencies wherever possible.
  • Educational Ecotourism
    • We engage with diverse local communities, tourists and other visitors.  We welcome our friends in the surrounding community to the land.
  • Landscapes for All our Relations
    • We grow edible and medicinal landscapes for the next seven generations of humans, and for all life.

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