The Chippewas of Georgina Island

New Learning Centre

In keeping with the CIECYR steadfast commitment to the Truth & Recommendation process, a request for a donation for the following initiative:   

 

The Chippewas of Georgina Island are located on the southern shores of Lake Simcoe near the town of Sutton, Ontario. The island community has a population of 380 people and is considered a remote community as it has limited access. Transportation to and from the island is by car ferry in the summer months and by ice road in the winter months. During the lake freeze-up and thaw, transportation is provided by an air boat.

The Chippewas of Georgina Island are fortunate enough to have a band-operated school located in the hub of the community that provides services for the community’s First Nation children from Kindergarten to Grade Five. However, the school is now over sixty years old and failing to meet student needs. The building was originally an Indian Day school and now, many decades later, is in continuous need of repairs. The building is also a reminder of the historical legacy of the government policy to eradicate the culture and language of the Georgina Island people. Unfortunately, the school was built on an underground aquifer which accounts for the constant water issues it faces. The basement regularly floods, and the caretaker can only dry out the basement, patch up the damage and move on. However, there is always remaining water damage like the efflorescence that grows on the floor and the mould that results. The building is showing its age, top to bottom, with cracks in the ceiling and areas that many animals have found accessible from the outdoors, including mice, snakes, and insects. Although the school has hard-working and effective staff, the building presents many barriers to learning, due to its size, structural problems, and age. 

 

All donations would offer a financial contribution towards building a library in the new learning centre that is being planned and supporting the educational needs of the children and youth of Georgina Island. 

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