Reweaving the Belt: Reconnecting to Spirit in All Generations with Dylan Richards

A growing number of Aboriginal peoples are disconnected from their traditional communities, teachings, and spirituality. Whether because of intergenerational trauma, relocation to distant communities, or even little to no knowledge of their traditions, the barriers between many Aboriginal peoples and their culture/spirituality are substantial. As we address the issue of Aboriginal wellness, we must wrestle with the realities of life today and find solutions to indiginize/decolonize within that reality. In this presentation we share stories, insights, experiences, and wrestle with the challenges and solutions for those who are seeking to reconnect to the ways of their people. Participants will leave with a better understanding of the complexities surrounding Aboriginal peoples reconnecting to culture, teachings, and spirituality, as well as a wide range of shared experiences from the presenter in addressing those complexities in a practical way. As well, it is hoped that the presentation will offer ideas and direction to participants as to how they can aid this reconnection, either as wisdom keepers or wisdom seekers. Dylan Richards is a proud Anishinaabe (Potawatomi) storyteller, community builder and educator from Edmonton, AB. Discovering his heritage after the death of his maternal grandfather, Dylan’s passion is helping individuals discover the complex and beautiful bits that make up their complete, complex selves. His current focus is in the areas of cultural rediscovery and indigenization, sexual identity and health, and building intentional communities among undeprivileged peoples. Dylan currently works as the Aboriginal Community Education Facilitator for HIV Edmonton in Edmonton AB.

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