At PBA, our mission is to foster Truth and Reconciliation while cultivating strong connections among the Indigenous peoples of this land, including the First Nations, Inuit, Métis, and the vibrant tapestry of new Canadian Immigrants.
On July 22nd, 2023, The People Bridge Advocacy organized a remarkable event called “Joining Heart and Cultures: Celebrating Diversity,” which marked a milestone in promoting inclusivity, respect, and appreciation for diverse cultures. 50 enthusiastic participants from diverse ethnic backgrounds, including a group of International Students from the University of Saskatchewan attended.
An Historic Gathering
Back to Batoche is an internationally recognized annual event that celebrates the rich history and culture of the Métis people, providing a platform for unity and understanding among different communities. The Back to Batoche Festival, now known as Back to Batoche Days, began in 1970. This Métis cultural celebration welcomes participants from all over the world to learn the rich and resilient history of the Métis and the significant role they played in Canadian history.
Back to Batoche is an event with a long-standing legacy, but the 2023 edition held particular significance due to the inclusion of The People Bridge Advocacy’s event. Together, we revelled in the spirit of unity, kinship, and community as we appreciated the Métis culture’s profound beauty and significance. This experience marked a significant milestone in our continued endeavours to strengthen relationships with Indigenous communities and contribute to the collective journey of reconciliation.
An Experience to Remember
“Joining Heart and Cultures: Celebrating Diversity” was a multi-faceted event that featured various activities and performances. Artisans and performers showcased their talents, providing an enriching experience for everyone involved. The focus for this year’s Back To Batoche was on the future, as they called 2023 the “year of youth”. Our event at the festival was an opportunity for new Canadians and immigrants to immerse themselves in the rich Métis traditions and also to learn.
This annual celebration, held on the national historic site of “The Battle of Batoche,” represents a movement toward reconciliation. The festival brought together thousands of people of all ages and backgrounds, and PBA were proud to be a part of the event and a part of the legacy of cross-cultural sharing that this event represents.
Bridging Hearts and Minds
The ripple effects of “Joining Heart and Cultures: Celebrating Diversity” were palpable, both during the event and beyond. Participants left the event with newfound knowledge, cultural appreciation, and connections with individuals from the Métis Nation and beyond. The power of shared experiences and genuine conversations showcased how seemingly different communities could unite under the common thread of humanity.
The event also left a lasting impact on the attendees’ perspectives, no doubt sparking ongoing conversations about embracing diversity and advocating for social harmony. We imagine these discussions will continue to extend into homes, schools, and workplaces, encouraging individuals to break down barriers and reject stereotypes that hinder genuine understanding.
Celebrating Diversity and Métis Culture
“Joining Heart and Cultures: Celebrating Diversity” at Back to Batoche 2023 was a testament to the power of unity and the strength that lies in diversity. The People Bridge Advocacy’s initiative exemplified the potential of bringing together people from all walks of life to cherish their differences while embracing their shared humanity.
The People Bridge Advocacy: Advocating for Unity and Inclusivity
The People Bridge Advocacy is a non-profit organization committed to building bridges of understanding between various communities and celebrating diversity. Through our initiatives, we strive to create spaces where individuals from different backgrounds can come together, share their stories, and celebrate their unique traditions. The organization believes that genuine connections can be forged when we recognize and value the richness that each culture brings to the table.