Diversity & inclusion: Equitable outcomes for all
Indigenous Climate Action (ICA) is an Indigenous-led climate justice organization guided by a diverse group of Indigenous Knowledge Keepers, water protectors and land defenders from communities and regions across the country.
In 2021–2022, ICA launched its Climate Leadership Program. The program supports Indigenous Peoples to reinforce their role as climate leaders and to develop relevant and effective climate resilience strategies in their communities. “There is a positive experience when education programs are created by and for Indigenous Peoples, and prioritize centering Indigenous knowledge and knowledge systems,” explains Eriel Tchekwie Deranger, Executive Director.
“To date the Climate Leadership Program has trained more than 50 Indigenous Peoples from across so-called Canada. Over 20 individuals have gone through our Facilitation Training to become Climate Leadership Program facilitators,” says Deranger.
To remove as many financial barriers as possible, participants receive internet, cell phone and childcare subsidies when completing the leadership program. For youth and Elders, the program also offers an hourly honorarium. Deranger speaks to the importance of offering financial assistance: “This is all to do our best to remove any financial barriers that participants may be experiencing.”
“The support of the McConnell Foundation goes beyond funding. We were given the power to determine where the funds can be spent based on the needs identified by our team,” says Deranger. “This approach has been critical to support our team to nurture our internal capacities and confidence in building and administering program offerings that have a real impact for our vision. That vision is a world with sovereign and thriving Indigenous Peoples and cultures leading climate justice for all.”