Sapotaweyak Cree Nation

Water Project

Sapotaweyak Cree Nation is located in beautiful West-Central Manitoba, just under 600 km north-west of Winnipeg.

Wise Words From One of Our Younger Students Arianna Rickard -- She got to know water a little better: “I think water is the key to life. It’s the most important thing you can ever have. We wouldn't live without it."

Pepper-Mackena Pritty, Isca Spillett and Jenna Rapai, students from the University of Manitoba, visited our community bringing with them a car load of scientific equipment.

There were three parts to the project

Purpose of the project

Protection of Canada's northern waters will depend not only on the application of the principles of western science, but also on the application of indigenous science. Therefore, this project was designed to ensure that participating students had extensive contact with Elders who could provide the necessary balance between science that is traditionally taught in schools, and the science that allowed their people to flourish since the end of the last ice age.

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Empowering our Youth to Know Their Water

The elders in our community as well as a team from the University of Manitoba helped some of our youth to better understand how our water resources are managed. An important part of this project was to give our youth hands on experience on some of the analytical equipment used in water treatment plants as well as in university laboratories. But probably just as important, if not more important, was that our youth got the opportunity to listen to their elders on the subject of water resources, giving them a better understanding of our traditional knowledge that is so important in managing our water.

Wise Words

Wise Words From One of Our Younger Students Arianna Rickard -- She got to know water a little better:

“I think water is the key to life. It’s the most important thing you can ever have. We wouldn't live without it."

This is one of the comments that Pepper-Mackena Pritty, Isca Spillett and Jenna Rapai got when they visited our community. Pepper, Isca and Jenna are University of Manitoba students, who drove up to our community with a car load of scientific equipment.

They met with youth from our community, and the youth from other nearby communities to participate in a two-day event.

Elder Knowledge

During the development of the Sapotaweyak Cree Nation Water Project, it was important that our students had the teachings of western science taught along side our traditional Cree teachings. The science teacher and the elders worked closely together to ensure knowledge that was translated, reflected both philosophies of science and culture.

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UofM Comes to our Community

UofM students give Sapotaweyak students some hands on experience in the lab.

Visit to the UofM - Welcome

As part of the project several students visited the University of Manitoba campus.

A visit to an ultra clean lab

The Ultra-Clean Trace Elements Laboratory is an ultra-trace analytical laboratory.

The Photovoice Project

Sapotaweyak students take pictures of their community.

Isca Spillet's Videos

UofM student made a series of videos dealing with water quality.

Learning by Doing