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Truth, Healing and Change in Dawnland

December 7, 2018 @ 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Truth, Healing and Change in Dawnland: Understanding the Relationships Between Native and Non-Native People in Maine

Presented by Barbara Kates

Friday, Dec. 7
Murray Hall, Room 102
2:00-4:00 pm

This presentation offers an understanding of relationships between Native and non-Native people in Maine. Between 2012 and 2015, people in Wabanaki and Maine communities collaborated on a precedent-setting initiative with goals of truth, healing, and change. They conceptualized and convened the Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC). Why was the commission necessary? What can this initiative teach us about truth, healing, and change? Supported with discussion, video and photos, Maine-Wabanaki REACH will present history that led up to the TRC, the Commission’s work, and how this leads to an understanding of colonization and decolonization. Maine-Wabanaki REACH, a cross cultural collaborative working in support of Wabanaki self-determination is the organization that initiated and supported the TRC.

Maine-Wabanaki REACH is a cross cultural collaborative working to support Wabanaki self-determination through education, healing, and restorative justice practices. REACH initiated the Maine Wabanaki-State Child Welfare Truth and Reconciliation Commission, the only TRC in the United States with a government mandate. REACH supported the TRC’s work in communities and now works towards the fulfillment of the recommendations. One of those recommendations is to educate communities about our colonizing history and current relationship. REACH has developed educational programming and has presented programs at universities across the country, national conferences, community libraries, staff training programs, schools, faith communities, and political events.

Barbara Kates, our presenter, has worked in the child welfare system for over 25 years developing innovative programs and training related to keeping children with families. During the TRC, Barbara worked as community organizer supporting people who worked in the child welfare system to come forward to tell their truths. She has presented for REACH at many organizations across the state including University of Maine, University of Maine Presque Isle, University of Maine Machias, University of Maine Augusta, Bowdoin College, Bates College, Unity College, Colby College, and College of the Atlantic.

For more information contact Thane Fremouw.


December 7, 2018
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
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Murray Hall