(L-R): Aaron Keeshig, Tianna Fillo, Jackie Hines, E Naad Maa Get (Branden Emmerson), Julie Robichaud. (Contributed by Martha Pedonoquotte) NEYAASHIINIGMIING – A group of Indigenous Men, Women and Two-Spirit people embarked on a cross-Canada Prayer Walk on the Winter Solstice, December 21, 2017, the day the sun returns for the New Year.
Da-Namaamin Moseyang Giw-Ganchigaazjig Kwewag, “We will walk in prayer for those murdered women.” The Prayer Walk is a grassroots, Indigenous-led walk that covered over 17,000 km from coast to coast.
The walk is a healing journey that aims to respond to the murders and disappearances of Indigenous women, girls, and future generations.
“We are walking, prayerfully, to express to all the kwewag and the families of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls that we care.” Said E Naad Maa Get (Branden Emmerson) of Chippewas of Nawash First Nation and lead walker of the group.
“As a man, I have a responsibility to address this issue and I call out to my fellow men and boys to walk with me."
The Prayer Walk will take about one year beginning December 21, 2017, at Neyaashiinigmiing (Cape Croker, Ontario).
The group will travel south on Highway 6 through Wiarton to Highway 21 and will then head east through Owen Sound, Meaford and Collingwood.
Once the group reaches Sudbury, they will travel west on the Trans-Canada Highway to Prince Rupert, British Columbia, then travel back east to St. John’s, Newfoundland, and return west to Neyaashiinigmiing. It will cover an approximate distance of 17,300 km.
A community feast was held for the Walkers on Wednesday, December 20 at the Chippewas of Nawash Community Centre.
The Prayer Walkers left from the Community Centre the morning of Thursday December 21, 2017 at 8 am.
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