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Blog: Wednesday, November 25th, 2020

Meet Ms. Fleury, Indigenous Support Worker

We are fortunate to have ‘Ms. Vanessa’ (as called by our students), as our Indigenous Support Worker at Prince Charles.  Ms. Fleury helps our Indigenous students learn about cultural identity and connect with Indigenous ancestry in a meaningful way.  When Indigenous students know their identity, who they are and where they have come from, they develop a positive sense of self and belonging. Ms. Fleury has a connection to culture, a commitment to learning and developing skills, a capacity to support culture and student success, and is a positive role model for Indigenous students and all students at Prince Charles. She challenges students to work hard, seek education and celebrate their ancestry

About Ms. Fleury: “Éy swáyel. I am Red River Metis from Saskatchewan; I am a proud momma of 3 and proud Kokum of 3. I was a stay at home mom for most of my youngest’s life and in that found my passion was teaching kids and spending time helping students. I graduated from University of the Fraser Valley in June 2020. I like to tell my personal story and share my experiences with the students.

My family has been embedded into Canadian history since the 1800’s and has been generationally affected by Indian Residential Schools, I am the first generation that did not attend even though I was old enough as the last school closed when I was 17. My grandmother was the Metis elder for the 2010 Olympics and carried the torch in the relay that ended here in Vancouver.”

The Indigenous program at Prince Charles in inclusive to ALL students at our school.  Ms. Fleury has chosen inclusivity in going forward to sharing Indigenous culture with all people through classroom presentations, storytelling, traditional crafts, and an awesome, interactive meeting space / classroom that is inviting and reflects Indigenous culture.  We encourage all students to stop by room 57 to look at her displays, or join in Lunch Club, or all the fantastic activities outlined below:

  •  Lunch club: students learn traditional crafts such as Salish weaving using looms (headbands, bracelets), Metis Finger weaving, beading, creating talking sticks
  • Kindergarten story telling takes place in K classrooms every 2 weeks.
  • In-class presentations: all classes receive presentations on Indigenous culture, including activities such as talking sticks, Christmas cards, beading flowers using safety pins, patterns, and math

Thank you, Ms. Fleury, and the entire team of support behind our students. We are grateful for the families, the teachers, Indigenous Support Workers and administrators that work hard each day to provide opportunity and space for Indigenous youth to meet their full potential, with support, caring and a quest to hear the truth. We are excited to see what is next for these talented young people.

We acknowledge that we work and learn on the traditional, ancestral, unceded, and shared territories of the Stó:lō people, Sema:th and Matheqwí First Nations.

About the land acknowledgement (above):  The Sema:th and Matheqwí are part of the Stó:lō  Nation and have lived in the Fraser Valley for more than 10,000 years. Acknowledging the territory is a way to honour and show respect to the original inhabitants of this land.

 

Xyólhmethet,

(Take care)