Guiding Principles

1. The Seven Sacred Teachings of the Anishinaabe

LOVE: it is important to care for one another

HONESTY: better to fail with honesty than succeed by fraud

RESPECT: give it, earn it, receive it

TRUTH: it is always easiest to speak the truth

HUMILITY: to be humble about your accomplishments is to be strong

COURAGE: let nothing stand in the way of doing the right thing

WISDOM: with hard work and dedication will come knowledge

2. Each group ideally will be composed of 8 to 10 persons, including at least three Indigenous persons.

talking stck
talking stick

3. With the help of a talking stick, each person in the circle group will be listened to in turn, treated with respect and valued for their insights.

4. We are proposing meeting times of one hour 15 minutes maximum, with each group meeting for ten weeks, thus requiring a serious commitment.

5. We will always endeavour to provide support for any participants experiencing trauma.

6. Because both personal and cultural differences play a role in the willingness and comfort level of people speaking in a group, respect, patience and courtesy are to be the hallmarks of the groups.

7. Participants will have to work hard to achieve equality of all participants as the structures of our society have not promoted that approach.

8. It is very important that we all recognize that the feelings of an individual are neither right nor wrong. They are real and need to be respected.

9. In accordance with the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Report, the four guiding principles for the new relationship are “mutual recognition, mutual respect, sharing, and mutual responsibility.” (Interim Report, page 23)

10. There is no cost in participation, only a common commitment to work toward achieving truth and reconciliation and equality of opportunity for Indigenous people of Canada.

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