“Ignite the Fire” Indigenous Studies Student Symposium

April 26, 2018-Over 300 secondary school students from eight schools will participate in a student symposium related to Indigenous Studies.


DATE: Monday, April 30, 2018
TIME: 8:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
LOCATION: Loyalist College, Belleville

Keynote speaker Michael Redhead Champagne (see below for more information) from Winnipeg, will talk about students being changemakers.

Ignite the Fire will provide students with a better understanding and sense of empowerment to make positive change as learners and leaders. The goal of this event is to provide a forum for students and educators to learn and discuss:

  • what Indigenous perspective is and means;
  • how everyone is a part of contemporary Indigenous issues;
  • teachings from multiple cultures and perspectives;
  • the importance of relationships as we move toward reconciliation; and
  • how they can become changemakers.

Ashley Richard will be the keynote speaker at the Ignite the Fire Indigenous Studies Student Symposium on April 25, 2019. (Photo credit: Red River College)

Students will participate in workshops led by Indigenous presenters from several different Indigenous communities across Canada.

Workshop topics

  • Residential Schools: Our History, Our Story, Our Legacy by Tanya (Shoo-Shoo) King- Maracle
  • Pillars of Calm, Positivity and Perseverance, by Joe Brant (Thohtharatye)
  • Importance of Treating Each Other with Patience and with a Good Heart, by Christine Luckasavitch
  • DNA - Dedicated Native Awareness, by Nimkii Osawamick
  • Perspectives on Indigenous Knowledge and World View, by Nancy Rowe (Giidaakunadaad)
  • Youth Empowerment and Indigenous Rights Awareness, by Gabrielle Fayant
  • Storytelling, by Daniel Richer
  • Art as Healing for Self-care and Self expression, by Aura
  • Re-connections, by Bill Montgomery
  • Conveying Cultural Values through Art, by Deron Douglas Ahsén:nase


  • 8:55 to 9:00 a.m Welcome in the Link Lounge
  • 9:00 to 10:00 a.m. Creating the Spark, Michael Champagne, Keynote Speaker
  • 10:10 to 11:10 a.m. Workshop sessions 1
  • 12:15 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. Workshop sessions 2
  • 1:25 to 2:00 p.m. Closing Keynote

Background on Michael Redhead Champagne

Michael Redhead Champagne has spent nearly two decades speaking out and leading by example. He takes a hopeful and solution oriented approach to youth engagement, facilitation, community organizing and mobilization.

The list of accolades for his work is both lengthy and well deserved. He was recognized as the 2016 Canadian Red Cross Young Humanitarian of the Year and in TIME Magazine as a Next Generation Leader. In 2016, Michael served on the Bank of Canada's bank note advisory committee with a task of creating a short list of women nominated by the public to appear on a new bank note. Michael has also received a Manitoba Aboriginal Youth Achievement Award as well as recognition as a CBC Manitoba Future 40 leader, a Manitoba Hero, and a Future Leader of Manitoba.

As the founder of AYO! (Aboriginal Youth Opportunities), he is committed to a wide variety of important community initiatives including Meet Me at the Bell Tower, AYO Politix, ARROWS Youth Engagement Strategy, 13 Fires, Fearless R2W and Winnipeg Water Wednesday. Michael has served as president of North End Community Renewal Corporation, a board member for the Circle of Life Thunderbird House and is currently serving on the board for Marymound Inc. His committee work currently includes United Way of Winnipeg's Council for Indigenous Relations and is an advisor to the Garden of Compassion initiative.

In January 2018 alone MC has helped announce a new texting service with Kids Help Phone and has been recognized with a Meritorious Service Decoration from the Governor General of Canada.

Michael is known for his straight up and heartfelt style that will leave you moved, inspired and ready for action.

For more information, contact:
Kerry Donnell, Communications Officer, 613-966-1170 or 1 800 267-4350, extension 2354, [email protected]