Drone photo of Matachewan First Nation in Ontario
Lauren's headshot


December 12, 2022

3 mins read

Matachewan First Nation, ON

Ramping up community connections

The Matachewan First Nation community is building an accessibility ramp to help keep elders connected.

As an Energizing Life Community Fund recipient, the Matachewan First Nation community is using funds to build an accessibility ramp onto elder Lorne Flood’s home. Lorne resides in his ancestorial home, where he grew up with his mother, Laura. With easier access, Lorne can come and go as he pleases and welcome younger generations of Matachewan members to connect, uplift and teach traditions that are best shared in person.

“We cannot emphasize the importance of people having continuous access to the community, and the community has continuous access to elders.”

Lorne Flood, Matachewan First Nation Elder

Watch the video to see how Matachewan First Nation is energizing life in their community.

photo of a man from Matachewan First Nation

Matachewan First Nation has a population of approximately 1,000 people. A small but mighty community, connecting often through Pow Wows, language and cooking classes. Youth also attend chaperoned bi-annual camping trips, allowing them to learn life skills like boat safety, fishing, survival skills and how to live off the land. These skills and memories keep youth engaged and empowered, continuing to be passed on from generation to generation.

photo of Matachewan First Nations members around a fire

The Importance of Indigenous Storytelling:

  1. It is a key method in transferring knowledge and lived experience.
  2. These stories, which are normally told by elders, hold underlying teachings of history, culture and spiritual beliefs, connecting individuals to that place and time.
  3. Listeners can visualize themselves within each story, helping them to have a purpose towards change.
  4. Histories and teachings are transferred down to each younger generation, helping to develop a core understanding of one’s culture and morals.

photo of an antique wall clock with a framed photo of two First Nations elders underneath it