CLIMATE EDUCATION WORKSHOPS IN ALBERTA’S NORTHERN INDIGENOUS COMMUNITIESCategory: 2018, Climate, Community Grant, Completed, Grant
The Rockies Institute (TRI) has been working hard to build its own capacity in order to grow the capacity of vulnerable individuals, organizations, and communities to build their climate resilience and adapt to the Earth’s changing environment.
TRI has proven track-record of partnering with Indigenous communities, beginning with the Kainai First Nation. They have been invited by Fort McKay Metis to deliver climate change education to their community, which has also led to recommendations for expanding to Fort Chipewyan. Alberta Ecotrust’s investment allows the organization to bring their model of program delivery to Indigenous communities in the North, creating a new foundation for future multi-year projects like they’ve started with communities in the South.
Here in Alberta, increased risk of drought, wildfires, and intense storm events can have serious consequences for First Nations – especially those living in Northern communities who are even more isolated. Developing knowledge and skills toward food, energy, and water security will be crucial in the days to come as will understanding the myriad of options that are being presented to them by governments and other agencies. Learning more about climate change and creating an internal dialogue about challenges and opportunities is an important stepping stone. Through the TRI’s work with the Kainai, they learned that the most important first step in building climate resilience is ensuring that the community is on-board and has a basic understanding of the key concepts such as mitigation versus adaptation. They also learned that by going through this process momentum is built and ideas are co-generated as to what climate related strategies and approaches will work best moving forward.