Most importantly, the project provided suggestions on how to increase the effectiveness of housing development and strategies. Meets students Were the eyes and voices of this project and the students described their perceptions, realities and hopes. Recently, in Saskatoon, Aboriginal student housing has received some attention. However, little information is available on Meets student housing needs and issues, in particular with regard to housing relevant to Meets nationhood and their practices, customs and traditions.
To address this gap, this project grew out of a proposal by Overborne International to the Bridges and Foundations Project on Serbian Aboriginal Housing to establish search focusing, specifically, on housing issues affecting the Meets student population, and research which would take into account the unique and constitutionally protected Meets traditions, practices and customs. It was proposed the research project relating to Meets students’ housing would be grounded within the context of Meets practices, customs and traditions.
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Accordingly, Overborne International undertook this challenge with educational institutions and scholars that have been involved in local, national and international education and Meets initiatives and as such, have a throng network and relationships with the Meets community as a whole, its members, students and Meets educational institutions and other education institutions that deliver services to Meets students.
The primary student target groups were those attending the Saskatchewan Urban Teacher Education Program (SUNSET), Gabriel Demount Institute (GUI), Demount Technical Institute (EDIT) and Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology – Kelsey Campus (ASSIST) in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Overall, the goal for the research project was to ensure the targeted Meets students’ voices were heard in reference to their experiences with housing in
Saskatoon. In an effort to competently grasp Meets student voices and show appropriate respect to 3 stakeholders, an Indigenous methodology was a critical component of the research development, gathering and analysis. The resulting report, Meets Student Housing Research Project: Housing that Supports Meets Student’ School Success, clearly demonstrates that the needs of Meets students are not being fully or even adequately met.
The challenges of achieving an inclusive, respectful approach in housing policies, development and strategies requires the recognition that Meets students are not a homogeneous group. The research shows a clear need for a variety of housing options for Saskatoon Meets students seeking to attain accessible, affordable and adequate housing options. There are strong themes that emerge from the research; namely, Meets students overwhelmingly want to be a part of specific Meets housing strategies and development throughout every step of the process.
Inclusion of Meets students’ input includes reviews and amendments to existing policies and rules of housing authorities to assist in addressing housing barriers for those students who are in need of finding adequate, affordable and appropriate housing. We were told that all levels of housing authorities must be flexible, inclusive and adaptable to accommodate students and their school terms. It was strongly suggested that housing authorities take the initiative and provide not only information on housing availability but also attend at Meets educational institutions to help Meets students with the application process.
Students told the research team of their strong support for a “Meets Village” as a way of providing housing or community for Meets people who are trying to change their life experiences. The research also wowed there is a lack of Meets-specific student housing models in existence. The vast majority of the Meets student target group was not within an Aboriginal housing agency umbrella. They were not in low-income housing and for those targeted post-secondary students, they were not in student residence.
The vast majority of the respondent students were in apartments that were in need of repair, were in locations that were not conducive to studies and/or had safety and security issues. For those few that were located within an Aboriginal housing delivery agency or low-income agency, they were not given priority in assignment of accommodations. For Saskatoon Meets students, housing 4 is more than a mere shelter. It is a place to study and raise children. It is a place to practice and share their culture.
The research shows that Meets student housing should be the kind of space that supports their family, culture and educational needs. The Final Report is to be shared with the targeted Meets student respondents, educational institutions, the Meets community, Meets housing delivery agencies and other housing, government and non-government interested parties. Through this innovative project, it is hoped the gathered knowledge Will be directly transferable, creating successful, meaningful, housing options for Meets students in the City of Saskatoon. Acknowledgements The research team would like to acknowledge the invaluable assistance provided to them by the Meets student respondents who took the time to provide candid, insightful and honest feedback. In addition, the research team would like to thank the numerous Meets educational leaders and those who deliver educational services to Meets students for their discussion of the issues and guidance provided to the research team. In particular, the research team would like to thank Mr.. Murray Hamilton, SUNSET Saskatoon Coordinator, Mr.. George MacAfee, Executive Director GUI/EDIT, Ms.
Lisa Wilson, Program Coordinator EDIT, Ms. Jacqueline Hunchback, Program Coordinator EDIT, Ms. Cindy Lesson L PAN Faculty and the numerous Professors who allowed, welcomed and provided time in their classes for us to meet and talk to the students. Thanks to Mr.. Brian Gallagher and Ms. Myra Yucca, Aboriginal Student Activity Centre (ASSIST) who not only provided ongoing dialogue and support for the gathering of ASSIST students but also their invaluable guidance in data collection instrument development. We also wish to acknowledge the work of Ms. Brenda Maier and Ms.
Allison Elegance, Aboriginal Student Housing Research Project interns who organized, attended, led talking circles and provided data entry services. As young students themselves, the research interns were an important part of ensuring the voices of the students were garnered. Without the participation and cooperation of all the parties, this research could not have been successfully completed. Special acknowledgement is made to Sensitive Rentals Inc. Board and Staff and to Ms. Jeannine Taylor, Project Coordinator of Bridges and Foundations, who provided ongoing support to the research am.
In addition, the research team would like to thank the Bridges and Foundations Project on Urban Aboriginal Housing under the leadership of Dry. Alan Anderson, Ms. Priscilla Settee and Mr.. Keith Hanson, who recognized the importance to gain better understanding of the gap between available Meets student housing options and what is needed to meet the needs and expectations of this important segment of our community in Saskatoon. 6 1. 0 Research Problem 1. 1 Introduction This project examined Meets student housing issues in Saskatoon with a view to the needs, challenges and gaps that Meets students face.
Most importantly, the project provided suggestions on how to increase the effectiveness of housing development and strategies. The project was undertaken through the eyes and voices of Meets students, who described their perceptions, realities and hopes. Although housing authorities, agencies and developers have made efforts to implement an inclusive approach to the study of Aboriginal student housing issues, the reality is that Meets students have not been involved in the process in a way which examined housing issues based on their own Nationhood with constitutionally protected traditions, practices r customs.
The research showed there is a crisis for Meets students when looking for housing options and a strong need to offer them respectful meaningful spaces anchored within their traditions. This project supported the goal of respectful housing options through capacity development between Meets and non-Meets peoples. The research showed that when Meets people are involved in the process, they become involved in the solutions. This study shows what strategies help to achieve these goals. It begins by examining the reality of the living conditions of Meets students.
It provides absence from which to make conclusions and recommendations that seek to meet the real needs of real Meets students. The research project concludes with recommendations for strategies that are relevant, manageable and empowering for Meets students’ school success through respectful housing development. 7 1. 2 Research Objectives While the research team was well aware and cognizant of research objective overlaps, particularly, given the holistic methodological approach undertaken in garnering Meets student views and voices.
Nevertheless, the project categorized and sought to specifically: ) develop formal vision and objectives: The research team identified and developed a contact list of Meets education institutions, Meets counselors working with Meets adult learners, housing providers and Meets student representatives. These individuals were involved in the process throughout. To undertake this portion of the project, the research team relied on existing relationships the research team had from years working in the field of education and used the networks of relationships within the Meets educational community.
These relationships have been established over years of collaboration and interaction. These previous experiences provided the trust foundation on which the current research was built. Initial discussions were held with the leaders of the Meets institutions and programs about the logistics of the project and with the professors, teachers and counselors working with students to formulate the objectives Of the survey and talking circles.
Through these preliminary discussions based on the key informant’s many years of experience working with Meets students, we identified the most important issues related to housing, which the informants had seen troubling Meets students on a regular basis. As well, key Meets students provided their thoughts and insights on important housing issues. The informants recommended questions about these issues be incorporated into the questionnaires and then, be used to lever more in- depth discusses in the talking circles. The research team coordinated the stakeholders in development of survey data collection instruments and the procedures necessary to direct research within each of the programs where Meets students were in attendance. B) develop population and forecasts: It was critical to ascertain the population being served by the Meets specific educational institutions anchored within the realities of student housing in the City of Saskatoon. Determining the population of Meets students in Saskatoon was important for establishing the parameters of the survey.
For this, the research team relied on the expertise and experience of educators and housing providers of the present population in Materialistic educational programs. In addition, knowing that the Meets population was high in ASSIST, although not a Meets-specific institution, Meets-specific data was garnered from the there as well. Forecasting the future housing needs of Meets dents required that we make every effort to obtain statistics on the population of Meets people who might be future students and require student housing.
The demographics generated in the present research will offer a starting place for housing authorities In understanding the extent and characteristics of the Meets student population in Saskatoon. Further it provides insight into the Meets-specific characteristics of the Meets student population. The research conducted by the research team ensured that the framework and parameters of the dialogue informed this research. Collect Meets student needs and expectations information: The research team gathered quantitative and qualitative demographic information including data collection by questionnaires, talking circles and small group techniques as well as through a literature review. 9 d) reflection of culture, linkages and identification: The research team identified Meets traditions, practices and customs as highlighted explicitly by Meets students and key informers. The research team reviewed housing development and structures currently undertaken in Saskatoon for Meets students against the identified cultural needs.
The search team analyzed and correlated data received and provided commentary on the gaps and potential partnerships available. Relationship- building and identification of potential partnerships was a critical component of this section of the research and is highlighted in the Conclusions and Recommendations section of the report. E) Host stakeholder meetings with focus on strengthening relations, and mechanisms: The research team hosted stakeholder meetings with focus on relationship building, capacity, and models viable for sustainable respectful development.
The research team’s approaches and findings were driven by he voices of the leaders in Meets educational institutions. Guidance from educational institutions came primarily from educators who are, themselves, members of the Meets community. F) Exploring housing models to meet the needs of the Meets student population in Saskatoon: The research team explored housing models to meet the needs of the Meets student population in Saskatoon.
The literature review proved not to be very helpful because the majority of the research on student housing, and there is a lot of it, focuses on student residences for students who are not Meets and do not have the characteristics of Meets adult earners. However, using the expertise of the Meets students themselves and the knowledge of the Meets educational institutions and counselors of Meets students, appropriate models for Meets student housing in Saskatoon began to emerge. The 10 research approach emphasized the inclusion and amalgamation of all levels of data received from students, stakeholders, delivery agents and literature.
Developing recommendations for future housing initiatives soon became the focus. The recommendations and successful models, as well as potential private and public sector partnerships, are identified in the Conclusions and Recommendations. . 3 Background As constitutionally recognized in Section 35(1 The Constitution Act, 1 982,1 Aboriginal peoples of Canada are comprised of the Indians, Meets and Intuit. The Meets are Aboriginal peoples separate and distinct from other Aboriginal peoples with their own customs, practices and traditions.
The Meets remain the only Aboriginal nations currently not recognized as being within federal jurisdiction, which raises unique challenges and impacts on Meets-specific research. One challenge is that a central registry of Meets Nation peoples across Turtle Island (Canada or within each of the provinces, cities, towns, or municipalities) does not exist as it does for other Aboriginal people. As a result, “official” numbers of Meets Nation homeland people that non-Meets people rely upon is generated and determined by Statistics Canada. These official numbers, however, do not constitute an accurate enumeration of the Meets people.
For many reasons, the Meets community does not see itself reflected in the “official” numbers. Therefore, determining Materialistic forecasts for planning purposes is often inaccurate when done strictly through Statistics Canada’s predictions of the Meets population. The only sure ay to determine Meets statistics is to work within the Meets community. Part of the difficulty, in outsiders developing statistics and/or deciding who the Meets are, lies in the fact that Meets identity is a complicated cultural, political, social and historical entity.
To survive, at times, Meets people have denied their identity particularly in the Meets homeland after the Riel Resistance when many Meets children were taught that it was dangerous to be Meets. Meets people were pushed to the fringes of society, living on road allowances, and moving from place to place, following available employment. 1 institution Act, 1982, schedule B to the Canada Act, 1982, (U. K. ), 1982, c. 11. 11 For many, survival as a nation of people depended on not becoming known to government officials, as Meets.
Regardless of the collusion to avoid “official” detection, Meets nationalism was kept alive by private and hidden gatherings. In the sass, about the time that some of the present Meets Elders were born, Meets nationalism re-flourished in an overt fashion and people once again began to openly celebrate their nationhood. It became somewhat more safe or accepted to state publicly that you were Meets. In some communities Hough, the hidden or “selective forgetting’ was maintained thereby keeping the younger generations from acknowledging or knowing their communal connections.
In some communities, the older generations that were well aware of historical discriminatory actions taken against the Meets attempted to make sure Meets community ties remained hidden. To say that you are Meets is a political act, and it is not easy for some, even to this day. To mark on a Census Canada form that they are “Meets” thereby declaring to non- Meets government officials their identity, requires a confrontation of racism and systemic discrimination. Meets identity can be and is further challenged by those who wrongly view Meets identity as a mixing of particular strains of blood.
As stated in the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, merely having Aboriginal blood does not make a person Meets, indeed it does not even make you Aboriginal. In a recent Supreme Court of Canada watershed case regarding hunting rights of the Meets, the issue of identity was discussed. 3 The true number of Meets people remains an issue to be grappled with, although people in the Meets communities have always asserted they know who is or should be recognized as Meets within the meaning of s. 5 of the Constitution of Canada.
For years Meets political organizations, fighting to meet the needs of Meets individuals and communities, have had to contend with the demand of non-Aboriginal organizations and governments to provide statistics to justify nationhood developments. However, information based upon Meets’ own knowledge is disputed and rejected as it does not conform with non-Aboriginal “official” counts. By rejecting Meets knowledge of their own community Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, 1 996, Volvo. 4. 3 R. V. Powell,  2 S. C. R. 207. See also R. V. Blabs  2 S. C. R. 236. 12 members, services and projects have been based on “pan-Aboriginal” assumptions that effectively wipe out, erase or at best ignore, specific Meets traditions, practices and customs. 4 Understanding the above background is critical to qualifying the “official” statistical findings provided below in the report and is offered as a context to the perpetuated misconceptions and myths about Meets communities that blur, even today, the understanding of Meets people’s realities by non-Aboriginal policy-makers in all areas of services, including housing development options. . 4 Meets Education Research literature has shown lack of support as a critical barrier to Aboriginal postsecondary education although the underlying factors have not been analyzed in any great depth. The research is even more scarce for specific Meets post-secondary and adult learners. When discussing education, it is seen as our buffalo that provides an opportunity to gain independence and improve future circumstances for the current generation and generations to come.
However, Meets educational attainment continues to be lower than that of Indian people living off-reserve and markedly below that of Canadians generally. From early contact, education for Meets people emphasized religious studies, with some basic arithmetic and writing. Meets people in some areas attended residential schools, and in the northwest, the sons Of affluent Meets received the formal education of the privileged, often being sent to Eastern Canada or England for higher education. Missionaries provided limited instruction to the children of Meets people who followed the migration of the buffalo.
However, most Meets in rural and northern It is beyond the scope or role of this paper to en numerate the Meets located within Saskatchewan or Saskatoon. Instead, the Research Team decided to gaslight the conservative estimates and statistics provided within “official” data bases to ensure the said findings are not dismissed or rejected by non- Meets. 4 13 areas had little or no access to more than primary school until the sass. According to the report of Albertan Ewing Commission in 1 936, 80 per cent of Meets children in the province had no schooling at all. Historically, the signing of treaties separated Aboriginal peoples into those with a direct treaty relationship to the federal government of Canada and those without such a relationship. After legal distinctions were drawn, the federal government dithered support for services from all but legally defined “Indians “. By an agreement between the government in Ottawa and the various churches in 191 0, the federal government stipulated that only children belonging to Indian bands could attend federally-sponsored schools.
This effectively denied Saskatchewan Meets children schooling in federally funded schools except in cases where the churches were prepared to provide schooling, at their expense, to these children. In reality, few Meets in Saskatchewan received schooling from the provincial school system. At best, the education of Saskatchewan Meets people was sporadic. In 1938, Mr.. Joe Ross, a Meets organizer for Lesotho and Punchy, questioned the provincial Department of Education officials as to why Meets children were not in school.
The provincial government position was that ‘half-breed’ children fell within federal responsibility and: So long as the Dominion Government maintains Indian reserves in the midst of white settlements there will be half-breed children. 6 As a result of the continuation of “Indian reserves”, the provincial government maintained that education of Meets children was the responsibility of the federal government. Provincial education officials held the position that the deader government should reimburse the provincial government for the schooling of any Meets children RECAP, 1996, Volvo. , Chi. 5 quoting Alberta, Report of the Royal Commission Appointed to Investigate the Conditions of the Half-Breed Population of Alberta (Edmonton: Provincial Museum and Archives of Alberta, 1936), p. 7. 6 Memorandum for Dry. McKenzie from Dry. Stillwell re “Education Of the Half-breed Children Of Saskatchewan”, October 12, 1 938 (Regina: Saskatchewan Archives Board, Department of Education Papers). 5 14 where grants from the provincial government were used to ensure their education.
While the governments debated who had responsibility for the schooling of Meets children in Saskatchewan, Meets children remained outside the traditional school/education system offered to all other Aboriginal and Nan-Aboriginal children. It was not until 1954 that Meets children located in Saskatchewan had open access to public schools. This was made possible by an aggressive program by the CUFF government to provide schooling to all children in the province under the banner of equal educational opportunity. Despite the access of Meets children to elementary schools after this time, no sigh schools were built.