Episode 3 of the pihtikwê podcast: Dr. Carol Hopkins – Culturally Based Means We Start From Culture First

Indigenous Peoples Day: A Call for Equity, Resilience, and Transformation in Recognition of Indigenous Contributions

June 21, 2024

As we celebrate another Indigenous Peoples Day, First Peoples Wellness Circle (FPWC) highlights and honours the vast contributions of Indigenous Peoples and communities to our world and everyday lives. Indigenous knowledge, evidence, language, and culture have significantly enhanced the lives of all living things and have profoundly impacted broader ecological and societal systems at large.

FPWC recognizes that Indigenous culture and knowledge remain essential for our health, environment, and collective well-being. However, recognition is not enough. We also want to highlight that the Canadian government has committed to supporting reconciliation and acknowledges the importance of Indigenous-led initiatives in education, training, mental health, and health care sectors. Honouring these commitments means providing equitable funding that not only addresses disparities but also empowers Indigenous communities to innovate and lead.

“Resilience is not a replacement for equitable funding, and Indigenous Peoples should not be burdened with the sole responsibility of combating the lasting impacts of colonialism maintained in policies, funding, and systemic barriers. Instead, there is a pressing need to support Indigenous self-determination and transform these systems at all levels.”

– Dr. Brenda Restoule, CEO

FPWC calls for accountability and justice in funding to ensure that the contributions of Indigenous Peoples are reciprocated appropriately. Indigenous communities continually expend their resources—time, energy, and efforts—fighting against systemic colonial influences and the longstanding effects of colonization. The government must follow through with their commitments to reconciliation by reciprocating with equitable funding and support for Indigenous organizations and health care systems to improve access and service standards.

This Indigenous Peoples Day let’s align our actions with our values and advocate for a future where Indigenous Peoples are supported in their wellness and have access to equitable health care and mental health services.

For further information and media inquiries, please contact communications@fpwc.ca.