‘She’s always been there, she’s my biggest fan,’ says 15-year old Takana Arcand (left) of her mom Miranda. Takana competes for Team Alberta in U16 girls’ softball. (Cameron Perrier/CBC) Cameron Perrier is an associate producer with CBC in Toronto. Raised in the Prairies, he started with CBC as a Joan Donaldson scholar. Proud of his Métis ancestry from Quebec, Cameron aims to highlight #Indigenous voices and perspectives.
Katana Arcand was four years old when she first attended her first #North American Indigenous Games.
Perched on the shoulders of her mother, Miranda Arcand, Katana — who is now 15 — waved a Canadian flag, supporting her mother’s athletic efforts at the games.
"It was nice to have her on my shoulders and see what she could accomplish at four years old," Miranda said of her daughter.
Katana is continuing her mother’s legacy, representing the Enoch Cree #First Nation on Team Alberta in under-16 softball.
It’s her second time at the games: she won gold in under-14 javelin in Regina in 2014. A legacy of family support
Miranda Arcand’s history with the games stretches back to Prince Albert, Sask., in 1993, when she was a talented track and field athlete winning multiple silver medals in shotput, javelin and discus. She has missed only two NAIGs, attending either as an athlete, coach or chaperone.
It was the games in Denver in 2006 when her daughter joined her for the first time, slung over her shoulders during the opening ceremonies.
Miranda remembered there was a tornado warning that night, but her daughter’s presence comforted her in the storm. Miranda Arcand is pictured with her daughter Takana (who was four years old at the time) perched on her shoulders at the 2006 Denver #NAIG. Miranda says she’s only missed two NAIGs as an athlete, coach or chaperone. Takana is now competing at her second games in 2017. (Courtesy of Miranda Arcand) Today, they continue to inspire each other.
"She comes to all my games, and she supports me all the time," Katana said of her mother.
Miranda said she’s amazed with her daughter’s efforts.
"It’s unimaginable, especially when she won the gold in javelin three years ago," she said. "You just can’t imagine that your offspring has accomplished something that you’ve been doing too."
One major supporter Miranda and Katana have in common is Miranda’s dad, a #residential school survivor. Miranda recalled how he and her mom scrounged to send Miranda to a sport school in Saskatchewan for basketball and volleyball.
"Even though they didn’t have enough money they did the best they could…. I didn’t realize how much they gave up for me to do that," she said.
MIranda said her father has supported her and Katana through all their athletic endeavours.
"Every hockey game, he’s there. Every softball game, he’s there. I have no words to explain how grateful and how proud … I’m overwhelmed with the support my dad has given me and my daughter," she said. Supporting #reconciliation through sport On their home reserve on the western edge of Edmonton, sport is an important part of everyone’s lives."I work at the school there and I coach the teams there in our little community and it’s quite popular and the kids quite like playing," Miranda said.However, both she and Katana see a lot of talented athletes who simply don’t have the support or means, sometimes dealing with the intergenerational effects of residential school in the community."They come from homes that are broken," she said. "I see this phenomenal athlete at home and they’re not being recognized. And that’s when I try to go to them and say, ‘Let’s try and do the best you can,’ […]
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