Understanding Indigenous Canada Initiative

Ecovision indigenous garden naming ceremony.

A day of Celebration and Cultural Learning through activity and engagement.

Indigenous Garden Naming Ceremony, Celebration and Cultural Day of Learning - March 21, 2022, Lacombe Composite High School.

On March 21, EcoVision, Lacombe Composite High School, Wolf Creek School Division, Viking Projects, and Indigenous First Nations, Communities and Elders of Treaty 6 Territory, came together to name the EPICC (Educational Pollinator Indigenous Carbon Capture) Garden. The event included the opportunity for students to learn Indigenous Culture through activity and engagement.
 
The day started with a Land Acknowledgement, Indigenous Blessing from Elder Bert Bull, and then the students participated in one of several Traditional Indigenous Activities.
 
The Workshops Included:
  • Beading
  • Dancing
  • Drumming
  • Living Roof Sessions
  • Ribbon Skirt Making
  • Storytelling

After the workshops, Blueberry Bison Burgers (800) were served.

Mike, Phil and Glenn of Viking Projects started the BBQs early, working with the Domestic Foods Students to get the burgers ready for guests and students to enjoy before the Sacred Garden Naming Ceremony.

Elder Bert Bull performed a Traditional Blessing and Smudging. The sign introducing the EPICC Gardens name was unveiled:

Okawimaw Asksisis – Little Mother Earth.

The garden is reintroducing 25 local plants with values to our Indigenous Peoples, pollinators and the climate crisis. Signs are being made for each plant in the garden by EcoVision and Art Students identifying the plant in both Cree and English. The signs highlight the benefits and traditional uses of the plant and contain a QR code that takes people to a website with more detailed information to learn about the plant and its uses/benefits to the Treaty 6 Territories Eco-System.

A Sacred Song and Drumming followed the sign unveiling with recognitions and the presentation of gifts after the Naming Ceremony.

This ceremony was followed by a Traditional Pow-wow where students and guests enjoyed different forms of Indigenous Dance, Traditional Attire and History/Storytelling before each performance.

March 21, 2022, was a memorable day where many different people came together to listen, learn and experience the Traditional Culture of Indigenous Peoples of Treaty 6 Territories.

The Importance of Teamwork

“When we look at the Truth & Reconciliation Documents, it is essential to identify how each one of us can contribute to positive change moving forward.

What if we listen to Indigenous Communities? Really take the time to hear the words they speak and ask questions, seek knowledge, and be open to conversation?

I have learned in my 40 years on this planet; there is always more to a story than the writer’s narrative.

When we can use empathy and set aside ego, we hear the truth.

When we are willing to work together and accept each other, we will find the truth. 

Only when we realize we are equals, not defined by selfish intent, can we move forward, together with respect, integrity, and true friendship.

 It is time to part ways with old ideologies that have been broken for many centuries. It is time for change.”

– Jacqueline Belbin, Marketing & Sustainability

Indigenous Canada - University of Alberta Certification

When we created this initiative, we wanted to ensure that our team had access to a beginning point when starting or continuing their journey to gain knowledge through learning. One of the essential aspects of Truth and Reconciliation is understanding Indigenous History.  Everyone will be at different points in their journey to understand. That is okay. Our responsibility as a company is to find learning opportunities and provide them to our team to support their journey.

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As of April 2022, 16 months after we made our initial commitment to provide this course and the time to complete it to our team, we will have all executives, senior managers, and supervisors completed and certified. It is a starting point in our company’s commitment to learning Indigenous History, but change starts with many people standing together and taking one step forward, followed by another step in the same direction.

Partnership with BCT Projects.

Viking Projects Ltd. welcomed Leonard Jackson to the Team in March 2020 as our Indigenous Relationship Manager. BCT Projects is a one-stop-shop for Indigenous Communities looking to build Capacity through industry partnerships and for companies looking for ways to build true and lasting relationships with Indigenous Communities. We ensure the wants and the abilities of a Indigenous Community align with the needs of Industry and. working together, we build relationships and projects at the same time as we build people capacity, meet project milestones, develop future business and achieve success for everyone involved.

Viking Projects Ltd. Are Proud Members of The First Nations Capacity Fund.

The First Nations Capacity Fund (FNCF) is a non-profit society that exists to create training and employment opportunities for Indigenous people in any vocation of their choosing. We also work with communities to build capacity to maximize economic development opportunities within their territories. Fund members come from Industry and pool their investments to create a more significant impact.

Leadership Growth & Mentor Program

Viking Projects Ltd. announces that Mike Tubb’s will be the Lead for Understanding Indigenous Canada. Mike will be working with Rob Wilson, CEO of Viking Projects Ltd. as his Mentor. 

Mike has been with Viking Projects Ltd. for twelve years and has spent his time between welding in the field and heading up our Business Development Team. He specializes in building relationships and knows Viking Projects Ltd. like the back of his hand. He is a dedicated team player and has been an active part of Viking Projects’ growth over the last twelve years. Mike understands how business development and field projects work, which is crucial when looking at the full picture at a high level. This understanding allows him to see items from different perspectives. This will be a large factor in the success of this initiative.

Truth And Reconciliation

Viking Projects Ltd. is committed to being an active participant in Truth and Reconciliation. We support our Indigenous Brothers, Sisters and Two-Spirited People as they raise their voices to ensure history does not repeat itself. As we continue to work with First Nations and Indigenous communities across Western Canada, we want to build lasting relationships and friendships. Canada is on the verge of an important change, one that has been a long time coming. A change that involves teamwork, understanding, communication, and actively seeking out the opportunities to listen and learn. Now is not the time to turn a blind eye but instead listen so that we can see what has been hidden for so long. We will lead by example, using our voices in unity to support the need for Truth and Reconciliation not as bystanders but as allies.

Response to Residential School, Kamloops - First Nation Capacity Fund

National Truth and Reconciliation Day 2021

On Friday, October 1st, we joined our friends at Lacombe Composite High School and EcoVision to raise a flag in remembrance of Indigenous Children of residential schools. Those who never came home and those who survived but paid a heavy emotional and physical price.

The students prepared readings to share, and a moment of silence was had in memory before the Every Child Matters flag was raised. A commitment was made that history would not repeat itself as long as we stood together in unity to listen and speak the truth.