Tag Archives: Terry Nelson

13-year-old boy, Wes Prankard, steals show with short speech at AFN’s annual assembly

“THERE ARE MOMENTS,” says the Annual General Assembly Co-Chair, Harold Tarbell, and he’s right. It will turn out to be the most emotional scene of the Assembly of First Nations’ three-day Toronto gathering: a cheerful and wholesome-looking, blonde-haired and blue-eyed thirteen year-old from Niagara Falls, brought to the podium at the behest of child-rights advocate Cindy Blackstock, has just delivered the week’s shortest but perhaps most eloquent speech, and the audience is on their feet:

Hello everybody, my name is Wes Prankard. For the past three years I have been trying to bridge the gap between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal children. What I’ve been doing started three years ago, when I saw pictures of the community Attawapiskat. Just seeing these conditions the children were living in, I just knew it wasn’t fair. And so I decided to do something.

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Canada’s Eighth Step to Roseau River

IF YOU’VE lived among Anishinabe, you’ve heard the phrase “too many chiefs and not enough indians.” It refers to the familiar spectacle of an environment which is rich in big ideas and big talk, but rather poor in the getting of things done. At the Roseau River Anishinabe First Nation in southern Manitoba, near the U.S. border, two chiefs have been elected within the last year, and the community is now facing a February referendum to sort out a bit of a jurisdictional mess. I advise you to put on your seatbelt as I rehearse a fascinating story which tells us quite a bit about how things work in the world of Indian Country.

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