SCREENS ON THE 27TH MARCH AT 10:30 AM AT NGĀ PURAPURA
KEWEKAPAWETAN (After The Flood)
Directed by Jennifer Dysart
The people of South Indian Lake Manitoba are slowly leaving behind a long period of social crisis brought on by the damming of their namesake lake in the 1970’s. The environmental devastation still exists, but the community returns to their original village site once a year for a gathering called ‘Kewekapawetan,’ meaning ‘going back’ or ‘looking back’ in the Cree language. Using archival film and photographs spanning 50 years, this film tells the story of this community’s success, demise, and recent efforts to improve their quality of life. The film also traces the film-maker’s own disconnected personal history to her Cree homeland where she has never resided. This story reminds us of the link between fragile ecosystems and healthy humans.
RIIS FROM AMNESIA
Directed by Janine Windolph and Trudy Stewart
RIIS from Amnesia, is a short documentary on the Regina Indian Industrial School (RIIS), its descendants and legacy. Run by the Presbyterian Church of Canada, the school opened its doors in 1891, drawing students from 43 First Nation communities in the North West Territories. The students came from across all three prairie provinces, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba, to the school located on the outskirts of Regina, Saskatchewan.
After closing in 1910, the school’s building and grounds became the city jail, and then a detention center for boys. In 1921, a prairie fire destroyed the wooden crosses used to mark the deceased RIIS students’ graves. The unmarked cemetery recently came back into the public eye when questions arose as to what to do with the site, the exact number of graves, who may be buried on the land, would it be re-memorialized, and how.
A collective of voices ranging from descendants of the school, concerned church members inspired to activism, local Elders and historians, share the history of the Regina Indian Industrial School and how it permeates present day culture.