My knowledge of Indigenous issues prior to reading this document was extremely limited and likely biased by mainstream media. I now have a better understanding of the social, cultural and economic issues affecting indigenous communities. As a company, we feel this document will play a key role in our Indigenous Engagement Strategy and will help our staff understand the importance of preserving indigenous culture as we all work towards reconciliation. Improving the economic conditions for Indigenous people on and off reserve will be essential in making reconciliation happen.
I would like to thank Maynard for his dedication to educating people through the CASTB and the other services he offers.
L. Maynard Harry and Stewart Alsgard were dynamic presenters who clearly showed the power of partnerships and how that could make a positive impact to community development.
Their story was indicative of many communities, people that were friendly but not neighborly. Their honest reflection of two communities working to become better was inspirational. I found their examples to be easy actions that could be replicated in any community. Their stories showed how important it is to show respect in building relationships.
In today's world, I believe that people want to move towards reconciliation but it is so politically charged that it is easy to feel frozen and not "do" anything for fear of doing the wrong thing. Listening to these two leaders showed me that honest engagement can forgive any small slips of protocol and that the relationship will only be further empowered by authenticity which includes graciousness when making mistakes.
I believe that their message is one that needs to be heard many times over and in as many communities as possible. It was exciting to hear their journey and their legacy. I believe what they shared can be replicated and as such, many communities will be able to move to the next level of sincere and prosperous partnerships where all benefit from what it means to be "neighbors".
We hired Maynard to conduct a Cultural Awareness Training session for our management team. From the start, he was very thorough in gathering information to cater his training to best suit our needs. We even had to change our intended date a couple times with limited notice, but Maynard was very accommodating and worked with our schedule. His presentation was very insightful and well received by everyone in attendance. The format of the session was unrestricted and free flowing, which fostered open discussion and made everyone feel at ease. Every single person learned a lot from Maynard's training. The whole process went very smoothly and I've still kept in touch with Maynard for advice regarding Indigenous relations. I would highly recommend him for his down-to-earth, and straight forward method to teaching Indigenous Cultural Awareness.
I asked Maynard to facilitate a cultural awareness session at a workshop I was helping to organize at my workplace. Our experience with Maynard was professional from start to finish. During the workshop preparations, he worked closely with our organizing team to understand our learning needs and tailor his material to help meet them. At the workshop itself, he provided helpful context, encouraged frank discussions, and offered pragmatic advice. Participants had many questions, and he was open to discussing all of them! Following the workshop, Maynard provided a summary report that will help inform our next steps. I highly recommend Maynard for his unique, honest, and insightful approach!
Our delegates were inspired and touched by Maynard's presentation at our 2018 Union of BC Municipalities Convention. Maynard’s thoughtful commentary on reconciliation and relationship-building between aboriginal and non-aboriginal communities was very well-received by our local government leaders. By sharing his own personal experiences, both challenging and triumphant, our delegates left the session with some excellent advice about how to better engage and work respectfully with their aboriginal neighbors.
Hazelwood asked Maynard Harry to carry out a Cultural Awareness training session for Senior Management in each of our associated businesses. His approach was greatly appreciated, and our group was able to gain insight into the realities which face many First Nations communities within Canada. The format, which included a presentation and open discussion, created an environment in which we were able to ask questions, obtain advice, and gain a greater appreciation the Canadian Indigenous Community. We would recommend Maynard’s presentation for any organization that is interested in working for, or with, First Nations. As Maynard points out, economic development for indigenous communities plays a significant role in reconciliation.