Millbrook, Nova Scotia, August 2, 2012 – An investment by the Government of Canada will help strengthen and preserve Aboriginal cultural identity in Nova Scotia. This was announced today by Scott Armstrong, Member of Parliament (Cumberland–Colchester–Musquodoboit Valley), on behalf of the Honourable James Moore, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages.
The funding will enable the Nova Scotia Native Women’s Association (NSNWA) to launch a new project that will prepare Mi’kmaq women for leadership roles. Educational workshops and sessions for Aboriginal women between the ages of 15 and 80 will be offered in the communities of Bear River, Annapolis Valley, Glooscap, and Chapel Island. The project activities will take place between September 2012 and March 2013.
“This year marks the start of the five-year countdown to Canada’s 150th birthday in 2017,” said Minister Moore. “Our Government is proud to invest in projects that contribute to our collective identity and define who we are as Canadians. On the road to 2017, let us continue to celebrate all of the things that make Canada the united, prosperous and free country we are today.”
“I am pleased that our Government supports this important project,” said Mr. Armstrong. “Our investment allows the NSNWA to continue its community engagement and leadership development activities, which enable Aboriginal women to participate fully in their communities.”
“The financial support from the Government of Canada is paramount in promoting Aboriginal women into positions of authority and decision making. Often barriers prohibit Aboriginal women from getting positions within their fields of expertise, or opportunities are not fully exploited,” said Cheryl Maloney, President of the Nova Scotia Native Women’s Association. “Our goal is to empower and mobilize one of the most valuable resources in our communities, the women. With the contributions we receive, we are able to get to work directly within the community and with the women.”
The Government of Canada has provided $18,274 in funding under the Aboriginal Women’s Programming Element of the Aboriginal Peoples’ Program of the Department of Canadian Heritage. This initiative enables Aboriginal women to influence policies, programs, legislation, and decision making that affect the social, cultural, economic, and political well-being in their communities and in Canadian society. It includes a component to address issues around family violence and a self-government initiative to support the full participation of Aboriginal women in consultations and decision-making processes.