REACH Edmonton Council for Safe Communities is located on Treaty 6 Territory- specifically from Amiskwaciwaskahikan which is Cree for Beaver Hills also known as Edmonton. Treaty 6 is the traditional meeting grounds, gathering place and travelling route of the Cree, Saulteaux, Blackfoot, Metis and Nakota Sioux. It is also home to Metis Region 4. Specifically the Treaty is an agreement between the Crown and First Nations and was signed on August 23, 1876 at Fort Carleton and then again on Sept 9 at Fort Pitt
The reason we do Land Acknowledgements if to honour those who have come before us and who have safe guarded this sacred land that we share and call home. In this small act of Reconciliation we also acknowledge and celebrate the amazing connection Indigenous people have to the land.
Many of us also have deep connections to the land- to the Mountains, lakes, streams and forests. We are all connected including to the four legged who depend on the land for their survival. I invite you to think about where you are from and why you too love this land.
To REACH, the land represents growth, hope, change and place where everyone feels a sense of belonging and equality.
Land Acknowledgements remind us of the importance of the intentional act of relationshipping – building relationships so we can co-create a better future using two-eyed seeing – looking at the world through both an Indigenous lens and a western one.
Land Acknowledgements are particularly important to the work of REACH- an organization that is committed to building partnerships and neighbourhoods where people feel safe and are safe. We are committed to Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion as a driver to this work. There is a word in Cree – Wakotowin which denotes the interconnected nature of relationships, community and natural systems- the essence of our work.