The Indigenous Inclusion Committee (IIC) of Young Pipeliners Association of Canada was established in October 2020 and has continued to gain momentum with members’ participation in the exploration of influencing change, sharing knowledge and networking with a key mandate of Indigenous Truth and Reconciliation. The Indigenous Inclusion Committee has several exciting updates with regards to Governance structure, Strategy, Co-Chairs, and ways to get involved with the IIC.
Governance is key for all new committees, it is the driver for any establishment and helps navigate decisions while defining the scope of the committee. The IIC has established a structure to meet once a month, to help guide and implement the development of Young Pipeliners’ relationships with Canada’s Indigenous communities nationwide. All members participate on a voluntary basis and are keen to provide a safe space for Indigenous inclusion in the Pipeline resource development process. Young Pipeliners members are focusing on exploring the current themes/topics to support Indigenous grass roots initiatives and drive changes in existing corporate structure. To ensure overall success, the IIC has Advisor members who participate in the monthly meetings to guide the IIC during this transition and share expertise on current themes and topics.
Within the IIC, an Indigenous Inclusion Strategy led by Annie Krover, Principal of Rise Consulting Ltd. has recently developed a framework with tactics to support IIC mandate: The Indigenous Inclusion Committee is responding to the call for inclusion and reconciliation by developing meaningful dialogue and formal programs within Young Pipeliners. The Indigenous Inclusion Strategy is broken up in four mission statements valued by the Young Pipeliners:
Network: Providing a network of peers to reach out when you need support, connection and inspiration
Knowledge: Delivering knowledge to members and facilitating the stewardship of the pipeline industry
Opportunities: Enabling our members to have access to opportunities for development, both personal and professional
Impact: Shaping the industry so that it attracts and retains high potential young professionals and clearly articulating and leading our bold vision of the future
As you may be aware, the IIC has two Co-Chairs (Matt Thomas and Kaella-Marie Earle) and welcomes Christa Wheat as a new Co-Chair role to join the IIC.
Christa Wheat has over seven years of working experience through consultation and engagement opportunities with Indigenous communities focusing on regulatory oversight, emergency management and stewardships/wildlife monitoring throughout a resource development lifecycle. A proud self identified Indigenous member from Blueberry River First Nations having strong roots within Treaty 8 community as well. Blueberry River First Nations is located approx. 80 km North of Fort St. John, BC and overlaps part of the Montney formation. Eager and excited to support the IIC, Christa has led the implementation of the Terms of Reference to help guide decision making, structure and flexibility for new members to participate as Core Members or Observers.
In conclusion, the IIC welcomes and supports new members who are interested to learn, explore and lead innovative ideas for Indigenous Inclusion. The IIC recommends the following materials to get started if you’re curious about learning more:
- Indigenous Canada is a free online virtual course from the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta.
- 21 Things you May Not Know About the Indian Act is a guidebook to understanding the legal repercussions on generations of Indigenous Peoples
- Think Indigenous is a podcast featuring presentations that highlight Indigenous perspectives on education and knowledge
To get involved as a volunteer, please email firstname.lastname@example.org expressing your interest in participating with a brief summary of who you are, ways you’d like to be involved and what you would like to learn from the Indigenous Inclusion Committee.