Moderator: Pete Thimmaiah
Climate Change & Health in Fort William First Nation: Planning for the Future, Today
Presenters: Elizabeth Esquega
The overarching goal of the project entitled "Climate Change & Health in Fort William First Nation: Planning for the Future, Today" is to build capacity for planning and implementing adaptation measures that protect and promote the physical, emotional, spiritual, and mental health of Fort William First Nation (FWFN) community members. To this end, we are developing a guiding framework based on the Medicine Wheel, conducting community workshops, gathering stories and Traditional Knowledge from community members in relation to climate change and health, and implementing a photovoice project with youth. The project builds on emerging relationships between FWFN, Lakehead University and community organizations in the Thunder Bay Region. Working together and strengthening these relationships is a critical step towards building capacity for developing and implementing adaptation measures that protect and promote health in the context of changing climate.
This oral presentation will describe and present preliminary findings and learnings from the project.
Resisting Pollinator Decline in Mi'kma'ki
Presenter: Peter Steiner
Native plants and pollinators are in decline due to a range of climate-change related threats. Gardenside pollinator habitat mitigates this decline by restoring biodiversity and function alongside sustainable agricultural production. As part of a coherent management plan at a landscape scale, it can promote connectivity between new and existing habitat patches. This is essential to effectively conserve many types of native pollinators, as flight ranges are often limited to hundreds of metres.
Mi'kmaw communities sit at a crucial intersection of this conservation, being urban communities set in rural contexts — often surrounded by agricultural land. Here, we show some first results from an initiative in which Mi'kmaq participants were invited to work on conserving forage material and corridors for pollinators as land managers. Traditional Algonquian culture-group agriculture involves companion planting of culturally-anchored native plants alongside food-producing plants (e.g, ceremonial tobacco alongside groundcherries), resulting in rich habitat for pollinators.