How to Use this Blog

Howdy! We've amassed tons of information and important history on this blog since 2010. If you have a keyword, use the search box below. Also check out the reference section above. If you have a question or need help searching, use the contact form at the bottom of the blog.

ALSO, if you buy any of the books at the links provided, the editor will earn a small amount of money or commission. (we thank you) (that is our disclaimer statement)

This is a blog. It is not a peer-reviewed journal, not a sponsored publication... The ideas, news and thoughts posted are sourced… or written by the editor or contributors.

FACEBOOK: www.facebook.com/AmericanIndianAdoptees

2016: Over a half million Visitors/Readers! This blog was ranked #49 in top 100 blogs about adoption. Let's make it #1...

Search This Blog

Friday, August 14, 2015

Indigenous man credits powwow for helping step away from addictions

Gabriel Whiteduck shares his story through song and dance

By Terrence Duff and Corinne Smith, CBC News 
Gabriel Whiteduck shares his experience with First Nations youth through workshops.
Gabriel Whiteduck shares his experience with First Nations youth through workshops. (Supplied)
"When I first came into powwow, I was suffering from addictions - drugs and alcohol," said the 33-year old, in a recent interview with the Cree Radio CBC.
"It was a way to put that down and take up something. I picked up the drum and dancing, I was able to really apply myself positively."
Whiteduck is a powwow teacher, dancer, drummer and singer. Algonquin and Plains Cree, he's originally from Prince Albert, Sask., and is now based in the Algonquin First Nation of Kitigan Zibi, Que.
Gabriel Whiteduck dancing at a powwow
Gabriel Whiteduck dances traditional men's style. (Supplied)

For Whiteduck, powwow culture has been a powerful force of change in his life. While becoming a father was a defining turning point in his adult life, he credits powwow dancing and drumming as a source of renewal. He wants to share that personal experience with other First Nations youth, through his workshops and teachings.
"The odds are against our young Native men and women, unfortunately," he said.
"My story is a celebration. I really celebrate that gift that was given to me, that was given to us, the gift of being able to move and speak freely."
He started travelling in the James Bay area of Northern Quebec a few years ago, visiting communities to lead powwow workshops and attend gatherings. Last summer he took part in the first ever powwow in Ouje-Bougoumou, a predominantly Christian Cree community that has in the past resisted that kind of gathering.

Cultural identity

Powwows don't have the same long history in Eeyou Istchee as they do for other First Nations, but the practise is spreading fast. Whiteduck believes it's important for people to remember that they have a distinct aboriginal cultural identity, whether or not they participate in powwows.
As "intertribal events" they simply add another dimension to First Nations cultural expression, he said. "It's a subculture underneath who we already are."
Whiteduck says when he visits communities, he's not there to tell people how to be Aboriginal. But he believes the powwow is a way to express your culture.
"I was once a person like that, I was very shy and nervous and I think about those people in the audience, so when I dance I try to give some of my confidence off towards them as much as I can," - Gabriel Whiteduck, powwow dancer
He dances and teaches traditional men's dancing, but says everyone's style is very personal. What he keeps in mind in the powwow circle is to connect and relate to his audience.
"I like to dance for the people that are watching, the people that feel they have barriers, they want to dance but they have the confidence or the courage to get up and dance," he said.              
"I was once a person like that, I was very shy and nervous and I think about those people in the audience, so when I dance I try to give some of my confidence off towards them as much as I can."
Whiteduck says it's very important to encourage youth to find a way to express themselves and tell their story, and he hopes powwow culture is one means to do that.
He wants to meet more youth and encourage them to bring their own songs and stories, of their lives and the land, to his workshops.

Listen to the interview: https://soundcloud.com/cree-radio-cbc/gabriel-whiteduck-turned-his-life-around-from-addiction-7-years-ago

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please: Share your reaction, your thoughts, and your opinions. Be passionate, be unapologetic. Offensive remarks will not be published. We are getting more and more spam. Comments will be monitored.

SEARCHING??

SEARCHING??
Are you still searching?

Every. Day.

Every. Day.
adoptees take back adoption narrative and reject propaganda

To Veronica Brown

Veronica, we adult adoptees are thinking of you today and every day. We will be here when you need us. Your journey in the adopted life has begun, nothing can revoke that now, the damage cannot be undone. Be courageous, you have what no adoptee before you has had; a strong group of adult adoptees who know your story, who are behind you and will always be so.

Read this SERIES

Read this SERIES
click image

Join!

National Indigenous Survivors of Child Welfare Network (NISCWN)

Membership Application Form

The Network is open to all Indigenous and Foster Care Survivors any time.

The procedure is simple: Just fill out the form HERE.

Source Link: NICWSN Membership

Customer Review

Thought-provoking and moving 11 October 2012
Two Worlds - Lost children of the Indian Adoption Projects

If you thought that ethnic cleansing was something for the history books, think again. This work tells the stories of Native American Indian adoptees "The Lost Birds" who continue to suffer the effects of successive US and Canadian government policies on adoption; policies that were in force as recently as the 1970's. Many of the contributors still bear the scars of their separation from their ancestral roots. What becomes apparent to the reader is the reality of a racial memory that lives in the DNA of adoptees and calls to them from the past.
The editors have let the contributors tell their own stories of their childhood and search for their blood relatives, allowing the reader to gain a true impression of their personalities. What becomes apparent is that nothing is straightforward; re-assimilation brings its own cultural and emotional problems. Not all of the stories are harrowing or sad; there are a number of heart-warming successes, and not all placements amongst white families had negative consequences. But with whom should the ultimate decision of adoption reside? Government authorities or the Indian people themselves? Read Two Worlds and decide for yourself.

ADOPTION TRUTH

As the single largest unregulated industry in the United States, adoption is viewed as a benevolent action that results in the formation of “forever families.”
The truth is that it is a very lucrative business with a known sales pitch. With profits last estimated at over $1.44 billion dollars a year, mothers who consider adoption for their babies need to be very aware that all of this promotion clouds the facts and only though independent research can they get an accurate account of what life might be like for both them and their child after signing the adoption paperwork.

from pinterest

Our Fault? (no)

Leland at Goldwater Protest

#defendicwa

A photo posted by defendicwa (@defendicwa) on