Our First Nations Leadership have always demonstrated their inherent rights to govern our nations by virtue of the authority of the Creator by exercising our Sovereign, Inherent and Treaty Rights to protect and preserve Anishinabek culture, languages, customs, traditions and practices.
Our Anishinabek Nations are represented by our Chiefs and Councils and have the ultimate decision-making authority to fulfill, express and protect the will of the people.
The Chiefs and Councils have acted and continue to act, pursuant to the seven laws, the Grandfather teachings and the traditions and customs of our Anishinabek people. Our Chiefs and Councils have the fiduciary obligation and responsibility to its band members, especially the children.
KGCFS ultimately respects the inherent authority as proclaimed by its member First Nation communities and is recognized in this Service Model. Protocol Agreements are intact with each member First Nation to enhance communication, collaboration and coordination and promote the best interests of the child.
Minidoowaadzimigok (Became Alive, Became Strong through Spirit)
It is the belief of KGCFS that it is a living spirit representing the Anishinabek people within its territorial jurisdiction. KGCFS honoured its original visionaries by naming ceremony with subsequent receipt of its clan (wolf representing family with children) and colours (all colours to encompass everything) through Raindance Ceremony.
KGCFS is comparably different in contrast to mainstream child welfare practices whereas the spirit of the organization is continually honoured within prescribed traditions and customary practices of the Anishinabek. Our relational connectedness to Gzhe’ Mnidoo and our ancestral and territorial lands and waters is parallel to our spiritual beliefs and practices. Our Anishinabemowin language, traditional ceremonies and teachings are significant spiritual elements of KGCFS.
Since inception, KGCFS has matured both physically and spiritually and in time has been gifted with sacred items to contribute to its sacred bundle that are considered as spiritual helpers. Through the years of development from a spiritual aspect in terms of development, KGCFS matured to become a young adult upon designation as of April 1, 2015.
The philosophy of KGCFS is founded on the recognition of the importance of the community to our traditional Anishinabek way of living. This concept extends to the idea that “It takes a Whole Community to Raise a Child”.
“Kina Gbezhgomi” means “All of us, we are one” and this concept of oneness is the essence of the interpretation of this meaning. We stand as individuals, each with our own uniqueness, as we stand together as one. As such, this service model will operate within the Anishinabek philosophy that recognizes the importance of COMMUNITY in raising and looking after the best interests of our children.
Sacred Responsibility (Roles and Responsibilities)
Kina Gbezhgomi Child and Family Services believes that children are regarded as sacred beings and gifts from Gzhe’ Mnidoo. We each have a collective responsibility to provide in the care and raising of our children which is central to the our Anishinabek culture and as described within the Creation Story.
Kina Gbezhgomi Child and Family Services can temporarily assume the responsibility of caring for children while in-care and will assure the preservation or enhancement of self-identity within the context of their culture and heritage [spiritual name/spiritual helpers/clan/colours], maintain a sense of belonging to know their community and familial history, to learn the Anishinabek world-views, assure relational connectedness to their immediate family, extended family and community, to their ancestral and territorial lands and waters and be supported to allow opportunities for each child to practice their own inherent culture, customs, spirituality and learn and speak our Anishinabemowin Language.
For KGCFS purpose, the Preamble serves as an introduction and a significant declaration to account the agency’s historical reasoning and intent including its identification to serve as the agency’s cultural foundation including statement of service as prepared by the KGCFS Elders Advisory Council.
WHEREAS, sovereignty is a natural and inherent right as gifted by Gzhe’ Mnidoo to the Anishinabek.
WHEREAS, the Anishinabek retain their sovereignty and continue to govern themselves as their ancestors have since the beginning of time.
WHEREAS, the historical intent and vision of Kina Gbezhgomi Child and Family Services was to support the establishment of a Child and Family Services Agency to act in accordance with the laws, traditions and customs of the Anishinabek to ensure the protection of their families and their children until such time member First Nations determine and assume their inherent right to provide and deliver child welfare service [responsibility] on behalf of their First Nation members.
NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, by Kina Gbezhgomi Child and Family Services proclaim that we are an Anishinabek Agency servicing Anishinabek people to ensure services are delivered by honouring the Anishinabek way of life.
Elders Advisory Council / Draft February 21, 2017
KGCFS Board of Directors Approved Motion #108/2017 – August 30, 2017
Preamble (Translated in Anishinabemowin)
(An agreement of membership).
Anishinabek gii miingowiwziwag wiinwaa wii bmaaknidsowaad/waa eshi-nogdowendeswaat.
(The Anishinabek were gifted to govern themselves).
Gii mjimnanaa’aa maanda. Bmaaknidsowag gwa gaawii geyaabi naasaab gchi miwzha gaabi zhi naagdowendizwaad.
(They believed in this. They govern themselves but not the same way as they did years ago).
Maaba Kina Gbezhgomi Binoojiinhyin miinwaa Ngodoode Bemiikwaajig niigan nikeyaa eshi-kawaabwag. Nasdawendaan dash wenbik ji zhichigaadegba Wiidjiindiwin.
(This Kina Gbezhgomi Child and Family Services are looking after their future. They understand that on the interim that this will be the arrangement for the membership agreement).
Anishinabek aadiziwin miinwaa Anishinabek maakonigewin aga penmonnaa’aa jwii waankii’endamawaad bemnaawsajig minwaa ge’e ada binoojiinhmiwaan.
(The Anishinabek way of life and the Anishinabek governance / sovereignty will provide the strength and confidence to move forward for the people and their families).
Biinish dash enso bezhik Anishinabek dinokiiwiwnan ji ni piitendizwaad wii nchike bizwaad da wiijiiwewag zhanda Wiijiindwining.
(Until every one of the Anishinabek communities shall gain the strength / ability to become independent they will be members of this agreement).
Giizhendaagwad dash maaba Kina Gbezhgomi Biinoojiinhyin miinwaa Ngodoode Bemiikwaajig kidwag Anishinabek bemiikaagejig ndaawmaawag miinwaa Anishinabek nbimiikwaanaanik, mnaadendaanaa Anishinabek aadiziwin, mii-maanda en-nokaazyaang miikoonggidwaa gwonda Anishinabek.
(It is therefore going to happen, that Kina Gbezhgomi Child and Family Services are providing the cultural / traditional care and that we respect the Anishinabek way of life and this is what we will use to deliver services to the Anishinabek).
Anishinaabe Aadziwin (Our Way of Life)
KGCFS recognizes that culture is unique to each individual Nation and Tribe; however, we also recognize that certain elements of culture may also be considered ‘universal’ in beliefs, traits and practices of Anishinabek worldviews.
For our purpose at KGCFS, we are adapting our own Anishinabek Aadziwin [our way of life] based upon our own traditional and territorial practices guided by our Gwektaadzaajig (Elders Advisory Council).
KGCFS will recognize and protect the rights of children while in care:
- Right to self-identity within the context of their culture and heritage [spiritual name/spiritual helpers/clan/colours]
- Right to a sense of belonging to know their community and familial history, to learn the Anishinabek world-views
- Right to relational connectedness to their immediate family, extended family and community
- Right to relational connectedness to our ancestral and territorial Lands and Waters
- Right to be supported to allow opportunities for a child to practice their own inherent culture, customs, spirituality and learn and speak our Anishinabemowin Language
- Right to be Safe and Protected
- Right to be Respected, Valued, Loved and treated Fairly
- Right to Clear Communication, allow an opportunity to be heard and to give an opinion, for adults to listen and take a child seriously
- Right to a Peaceful Environment and Consistent Structure
- Right to receive the best health care as possible including ceremonial practices of the Anishinabek to focus on the wholistic well-being of the child
- Right to receive good quality and specialized education if warranted to allow an opportunity for each child to thrive and reach their full potential
- Right to respect privacy as long as the child is not inappropriate, causes no harm to self or others
- Right to ensure their rights are protected
Anishinabek Healing Based Practices
KCGFS’s focus is to support children and strengthen families and communities to prevent the need for child welfare interventions including the apprehension of our children and strive for unity. KGCFS Service Model will focus on the spiritual connectedness of healing by utilizing Anishinabek Aadzawin traditional healing methods, strength-based services with goal of family preservation and reunification.