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RDP Hosts Indigenous Culture Camp

Jun 03, 2024
A group sits outside in a large circle on a sunny day. Behind them are three teepees

In collaboration with regional partners, Indigenous Knowledge Keepers and Elders, Red Deer Polytechnic (RDP) welcomed educators, faculty, staff and students to Indigenous Culture Camp May 30 and 31.  

Alongside Indigenous leaders, Red Deer Public Schools and Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools, RDP offered this culturally immersive professional and personal development opportunity on RDP’s main campus.  

“Indigenous Culture Camp provided an opportunity for participants to connect and expand their knowledge of Indigenous ways of knowing and being through land-based learning,” says Lloyd Desjarlais, Dean of Indigenous Initiatives. “This event is one example of how RDP creates meaningful reconciliation initiatives and educational enhancements for diverse stakeholders.” 

Indigenous Culture Camp featured a variety of sessions that provided authentic outdoor teaching and learning opportunities in tipis, Métis trapper’s tents and an Inuit tupiq. The sessions included a Métis Fiddling and Jigging Demonstration, Traditional Parenting: Medicine Wheel Teachings and Blackfoot Teaching History, Traditions and Language.  

Indigenous Knowledge Keepers and Elders from the region played significant roles in the teachings at the Camp, leading sessions by sharing their culture and knowledge.

As a benefit to students of all ages, teachers and post-secondary instructors will be able to integrate the knowledge and experiences they have gained from Indigenous Culture Camp into the classroom. However, the advantages of attending Indigenous Culture Camp go beyond professional practice.  

Through these unique experiences at the Camp, participants also had the opportunity to foster meaningful reciprocal relationships with Indigenous Peoples as supported by RDP’s  
Reconcili-Action Plan 2023-2028.  

The Reconcili-Action Plan 2023-2028 represents an important step in RDP’s commitment to the recognition of Treaties, advancement of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action, allegiance to Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) Indigenous Education Protocol and its responsibility to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

The Reconcili-Action Plan was created by RDP faculty and staff in consultation with Indigenous Peoples. 

The Indigenous Culture Camp kicks off a variety of planned initiatives that RDP has in store as the Polytechnic community recognized National Indigenous History Month in June.  

Learn more information about Indigenous initiatives at RDP.  

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