trails with walk for nations

Walk for Nations enters Serpent River First Nation



Feet lead the way. Down trails, down sidewalks, down highways that bring us to the next destination. Our feet have a purpose – they are locked in with what our heart leads us to – our dreams of a better tomorrow.


On this land, our people have walked many miles, over many days, weeks, months, and years bringing messages, dreams, awareness, and creating solidarity. Our people have always had runners whose sole purpose was bringing messages to the people. And this purpose has not diminished. It continues today.


Tracie, Mike, Ervin, Leland and Kenny visit with Inuit Elder.

Walk for Nations has embarked on an epic journey that will bring them across many First Nations’ territories that began on the East Coast in the community of Miawpukek First Nation, NFLD on May 1, 2011 and will continue till the group reaches the West Coast shores of Campbell River, BC in the spring of 2012. In any journey it comes with a dream, an idea, or a correlation of conversations and converged energy to do something big and make a lasting impact. This began at the heart of the people from the Seven Generations Healing Network (7GEN) that includes Mike Gladue, Ervin Chartrand, Tracie Louttit, Kevin Nadjiwon, and many supporters and community members.


This journey is that of healing and bringing hope to Aboriginal youth across this land. The ultimate goal is to raise funds to establish a 7GEN’s Urban Youth Safe House Healing Program, Awasis Nekan Ote (Cree): Here, The Children Come First in Toronto, ON but with a dream to create such a center in major urban cities across Canada. This Safe House will bring youth together and connect them to Elders, cultural and traditional knowledge keepers, and the community so that the Youth are inspired to draw upon their culture and balance life in urban areas. With urban life comes a wide range of distractions including alcohol and drug abuse, and gang activity which can entice Aboriginal youth and can lead to dropping out of school, violence, addiction, and many other negative activities. Things can get out of hand very quickly. But if there is a connection to culture, traditions, ceremony and language then it can be used as an alternative and a place to bring balance. And this is where the dream begins with the creation of safe house that will give purpose, support and an alternative to urban Aboriginal youth.

Walk for Nations is not only collecting mileage but they are collecting memories, stories, friends, and solidarity along the way that will bring them closer to their purpose. Today is September 7, 2011, and you can find them in Winnipeg, MB on September 9, 2011 at Kildonan Park at 9am. If you are in Winnipeg come down and walk with them to Thunderbird House. There is also a free concert on September 16th 6-10pm at Lyric Theatre at Assiniboine Park, Winnipeg, MB.

For more information, contact, catch up with them on the highway, or to donate, please visit or at the group’s Facebook page:


Walk of Nations visit Inuit youth, Ottawa, ON





i walk

along an eagle feather

a tightrope

keeping the balance in between

the light

and the dark

it is struggle that we all carry


my feet are anchored

by a spirit that slips

between the shadows

where ancestors meet

holding all that is true


my heart is a thunderous beat

as i run across asphalt

and skip over potholes with murky water

no one would dare to drink out of

but looks familiar to me

and a taste i try to forget


with every step

it is closer to a dream


with every step

there are no regrets


with every step

there is a sacrifice

of ones left behind

daughters, sons,

wives, lovers,

mothers, fathers, cousins

nokimis, mishomis

all keep council around fires

saamaa offered to Gitchi Manitou

for this sacrifice

of blisters, scars, sweat, and tears


at the end of the day

as i remove these tattered sneakers

i remember the stories

the laughter

the ceremonies

and the people

who i do this all for.


and when i wake

dew still clings to the blades of grass

this sacrifice is what inspires me to carry on

walking for nations

along the spine of an eagle feather

till the end where i will dip

into the pacific ocean

and rise to a new day.



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