Free to Do Ceremony Anywhere
Belonging, home, community, Indigenous voice, and reconciliation.
For Kevin Myran, Regent Park is best described as “home”. Despite never living in the community he has felt a deep connection to this place since he first arrived to attend a Council Fire Pow Wow many years ago. He recalls that as a kid he lived everywhere, and moved every 6 months, until finally settling himself in Peterborough at the age 16, when he secured a job and began going to school. Kevin has found deep meaning working with the Indigenous community. Growing up he always proud to be Indigenous, and did not realize that many other Indigenous people do not feel this way. He remembers feeling heartbroken for elders when learning at age 17 about residential schools and the systematic oppression and racism faced by his people. Kevin was taught as a child that, as an Indigenous person, all land was his land, which meant he should feel free to settle and do ceremony anywhere, because it was all the land of his people. In his role as Culture Director of the Little Embers after-school program at Toronto Council Fire, he was committed to ensuring that Indigenous children and youth also knew this. He worked to instill pride and joy among youth, teaching kids about drumming, regalia-making and dancing. Kevin worked to build a vibrant Indigenous community in Regent Park through establishing Family Night at Council Fire, inviting families (Indigenous and non-Indigenous) to come out, enjoy family activities and learn about their cultures. To support the event he built a buffalo hide drum, and invited all participating families to sign it so that their signatures were inside the drum. Drumming is recognized as an important practice in the restoration of Indigenous identity.