WINNIPEG, Manitoba–(Thursday, November 17, 2022)– A new initiative to promote Indigenous Heritage Learning was announced by Nelson House – Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation (NCN) Family and Community Wellness Centre today. The overall theme of this initiative is entitled “Reconciling the Past to Build the Future.”
NCN have engaged DecisionWorks Consulting (DWC) and Delphi Technology Corp (DTC) to collaborate with them to build an engaging and interactive online portal. The purpose of the portal is to help members of the Nelson House community remember what the environment was like before the 1977 flood by the Churchill River Diversion Project. This portal will recreate certain key areas in the Traditional Territory with the hope that being able to encounter the historical landscapes will help transmit the oral traditions and reaffirm the identity of the local community members. The overall message is that there is hope for the future and the environment is starting to overcome the damaging flood but in order to genuinely appreciate this recovery, community members need to recognize and reconcile with what was lost.
Subsequent phases of this online portal will become a repository for essential learning about the community’s culture, history, traditions, and language. It will deliver a clear sense that it is of immense importance to learn from the past, but not live in the past. The portal will help provide another method of passing on essential knowledge from the elders and help prepare the next generation to take over and keep alive the traditions and community identity.
Working together with community elders, DWC has captured memories in the form of illustrations and video stories that will be used to create virtual environments that can be experienced online. These sacred sites had existed and been part of the local traditions and teachings for hundreds of years.
As part of this initiative, Delphi Technology Corp will provide the Nelson House Community with the use of Delphi’s product VR City™, a virtual learning platform equipped with real-time feedback. With VR City™, users can train and collaborate with others in a simulated environment.
Acting as the primary sponsor of the initiative, Felix Walker, Executive Director of NCN, stated, “The flooding of the rivers in the late 1970s devastated the local environment by wiping out sacred sites that had been an integral part of local culture and communal memory. It is critical for the continued survival of the local traditions and beliefs that these sacred sites be brought to life before all those that remember them can no longer share their stories.”
Grant Barkman, President of DWC and Lead Facilitator for the initiative, stated, “We are excited to be working with the Nelson House Community to develop Indigenous Heritage Education in consultation with the Elders. These types of community-based initiatives provide the perfect vehicle for open sharing and for the process of reconciliation to take root and grow.”
Alan Tay, CEO of DTC responded to say, “It is with great pleasure that we provide a platform to facilitate learning, collaboration, and reflection for communities. Our virtual educational platform is focused on content that is defined and developed by the communities themselves. This is a perfect example of how we envisioned our platform being utilized, moving us closer towards our vision of providing immersive education for everyone.”
About Nelson House – Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation Family and Community Wellness Centre
The Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation (NCN) Family and Community Wellness Centre were established to support holistic wellness by providing additional opportunities for the Citizens of the NCN to build on their strengths as individuals, as members of families and as part of the community. The Centre provides services in Public Health, Child and Family Services, Counselling and other family and community need programs. It has sub-offices in Winnipeg, Brandon, Thompson and South Indian Lake.
About DecisionWorks Consulting Inc
DecisionWorks is a Manitoba-based consulting firm whose central mission is to help clients manage change through effective decision-making. At DecisionWorks, the use of visualization has always been central to developing consensus and decision-making within a group dynamic. The introduction of three-dimensional augmented reality (AR / VR) is a modern extension of the visualization medium and one which DecisionWorks fully intends to more fully leverage in future client engagements.
About Delphi Technology Corp
Delphi Technology Corp works with organizations to increase their training capacity by attracting, recruiting, developing, and retaining their future workforce. Delphi offers upskilling opportunities to boost employee retention based on data analytics and pre-determined skill requirements. Delphi’s product, VR City, is a virtual training campus where Delphi transforms workplaces into an experiential experience where talents are inspired and equipped with real-time feedback and a personal tutor.
Chief Executive Officer – Nelson House – Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation Family and Community Wellness Centre
President and CEO – DecisionWorks Consulting Inc.
Chief Marketing Officer – Delphi Technology Corp.