Brenda Martin | Jul 14, 2021
For Canada Day 2021, the Malcolm and Ardoch Lake Landowners Association (MALLA) did not celebrate with their annual boat flotilla. Using a suggestion from Glen and Lynn Fowler, the executive organized an event to honour the First Nations missing and Indigenous children. MALLA members were invited to bring native plants and small shoes to add to the perennial garden that had been created.
On July 1st at 11am, participants gathered at the Monamin (Wild Rice) monument in the hamlet of Ardoch. MALLA Vice President, Brenda Martin, welcomed and thanked the group. She spoke about the original peoples of this community and their close friendships with the Algonquins. Mrs. Martin explained the significance of the plants, which symbolize “transformation”. Roots represent the past and honour heritage and ancestors. Trunk represents the present and reveals the life force and creative spirit within each of us.
Branches represent desired future goals. Fruit or flowers represent attainment of goals. The four scared plants used by First Nations were: Tobacco (east), Sage (south), Sweetgrass (West), Cedar (North).
Through our local liaison, Mona Perry, the Ardoch Algonquin First Nation was asked to participate. Several local people with native heritage assisted with the event as well. Members of the Ardoch Algonquin First Nations from Westport and Peterborough made a significant contribution to the event with their family stories, songs, and provided the smudging ceremony during the plant and shoe dedication.
Grandchildren of the Zedo family of Malcolm Lake (Ziya, Max and Athena) were present.
Ziya came prepared with a poster to honour the indigenous children and shared her thoughts with the gathering.
It was a very meaningful and emotional aspect of the event. Community members are invited to check out the new garden in Ardoch village. The ending prayer asked that we do everything possible to love, to encourage, to nurture and at all times to look out for the safety and security of the children and young people who live among us.
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