Connect with us

Anishinabek News

Wiikwemkoong member looking to launch bursary in honour of late sister

Published

on

Trigger Warning: readers may be triggered by the mention of suicide. To access a 24-hour national helpline: Talk Suicide Canada 24/7: 1-833-456-4566 (toll-free). Community Assistance Program (CAP) can be accessed for citizens of the Anishinabek Nation: 1-800-663-1142.

Emily Granville of Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory on Manitoulin Island is aiming to create the Jayda Otosquaiob Memorial Bursary for Indigenous students who have been in the child welfare system in honour of her sister, Jayda Otosquaiob-baa. – Photo supplied

By Sam Laskaris

WIIKWEMKOONG UNCEDED TERRITORY – A young Indigenous woman has started a GoFundMe campaign to assist graduating Indigenous Manitoulin Island high school students who have come up through of the child welfare system.

Emily Granville, a 26-year-old member of Wiikwemkoong Unceded Territory on Manitoulin Island, started the campaign in honour of her late foster sister Jayda Otosquaiob-baa to create bursaries for Indigenous students that grew up in the child welfare system and are keen to go on to post-secondary studies.

Jayda-baa, who was 13 and a Grade 8 student at Assiginack Public School and within the child welfare system, who died by suicide last month.

The original goal was to raise $7,500. As for Apr. 24, more than $6,900 had been raised.

“I think Jayda would be ecstatic if she saw that,” Granville said.

Granville, who is pursuing a music degree at Wilfrid Laurier University, said her sister was dealing with some mental health issues. She also had some learning difficulties and it is believed that she was also being bullied.

“I think a lot of the pressures of being from the child welfare system really contributed to the decision that she made,” Granville said.

Granville is hoping the bursaries that she plans to award in her sister’s memory will assist other Indigenous youth that have been in the child welfare system and might be struggling.

“I thought it would be important,” Granville said of her campaign. “They kind of need that push [to continue schooling and go to post-secondary studies]. Right now, there are not many resources and support available.”

Ideally, Granville would like to award two bursaries each year. One would go to a student at Wikwemikong High School and the other to a student at Manitoulin Secondary School.

“I would hope it would be at least $500 for each student,” Granville said, adding she is hoping the first bursaries will be awarded in June of 2024. “And I would like it to last for several years.”

Granville added she’s thrilled with how much has been raised thus far through the campaign.

“That makes me happy,” she said. “It makes me glad that people want to help these students out.”

Donations have ranged from $5 to several hundred dollars, but every dollar helps.

“There’s some names I don’t know where they are from,” Granville said of the donors.

Though the GoFundMe goal was listed at $7,500, Granville said she is hoping sufficient funds are raised to keep awarding bursaries for numerous years.

Granville also plans to continue raising funds towards the bursary in the coming months. She plans to create some beadwork products to sell and possibly also have a raffle which would bring in some additional funds for the bursary.

“I’m just trying to get the word out there and see if I can get it rolling,” Granville said of the bursary, which officially will be named the Jayda Otosquaiob Memorial Bursary.

Jada-baa will be remembered for her heart of gold and compassion. Jayda loved listening to music, swimming, her animals, and hanging with her friends and family.

Those looking to contribute to the GoFundMe campaign can do so at: https://www.gofundme.com/f/jayda-otosquaiob

Continue Reading

Anishinabek News

Indigenous Institutes post-secondary education on the brink of collapse

Published

on

By

FORT WILLIAM FIRST NATION (February 27, 2024) – The February 26, 2024, announcement of $1.3 billion over three years for colleges and universities by the Ontario government once again prioritizes […]

Continue Reading

Anishinabek News

Administration Support Worker

Published

on

By

Post Content

Continue Reading

Anishinabek News

Child Well-Being Worker

Published

on

By

Post Content

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2023 5039589 Ontario Inc.