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The Ontario Native Women's Association (ONWA) is a not for profit organization that was established in 1971 to empower and support Indigenous women and their families throughout the province of Ontario.

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ONWA is growing! We are always looking for passionate and committed individuals who have a keen interest in advocating and supporting Indigenous Women. Join our team today!

Click here to see the current job opportunities available at ONWA!


October 18, 2019

Ontario Native Women’s Association Launches Indigenous Women’s Magazine

Finally, an Indigenous Women’s magazine, a new empowering voice for Indigenous women. The Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA) is proud to announce the launch of the inaugural edition of their new biannual official publication “She is Wise” magazine.

The new magazine is a platform that will empower Indigenous women and actively support ONWA’s on-going work to end racism and violence as well as celebrating Indigenous women’s accomplishments and successes.

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Click here to read She Is Wise Magazine 1st edition


April 3, 2019

Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA) Calls to Individuals, Communities and Systems to Work in Unity Towards Change

Ottawa, ON – June 3, 2019 Today Canada received the much-anticipated National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG) Final Report, Reclaiming Power and Place.

ONWA acknowledges the families that have chosen to participate in this process and those who have not. “We need to begin to look at how we work together, we need to rebuild our relationships as agencies, community members and systems. We need change now,” stated ONWA Executive Director Cora McGuire-Cyrette. ONWA has seen how effective holistic strength-based services, combined with Indigenous ways of knowing and being are in providing wrap around services to Indigenous women and families which mirrors many of the recommendations within the Inquiry Final Report.

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Read Reclaiming Power and Place: The Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls

Read Journey to Safe SPACES: Indigenous Anti- Human Trafficking Engagement Report


May 29, 2019

Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA) Releases Journey to Safe SPACES: Indigenous Anti- Human Trafficking Engagement Report

Thunder Bay, May 29, 2019 – ONWA released the survivor and community led Journey to Safe SPACES: Indigenous Anti- Human Trafficking Engagement Report at a press conference held in Thunder Bay today. The report, funded in collaboration with the Minister of Children, Community and Social Services and Minister Responsible for Women's Issues, provides a pathway for new collaborative and integrated working relationships in Ontario.

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Read Report


December 14, 2018

MMIWG Inquiry will fail women and families if it does not address Human Trafficking

Thunder Bay, Dec-14-18 – The MMIWG Inquiry is hearing closing submissions in Ottawa today before moving on to drafting the Inquiry’s final recommendations. The Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA) is voicing deep concern that you can’t talk about MMIWG without addressing the crisis of Human Trafficking.

We know that Indigenous women and girls are over-represented in Human Trafficking and they continue to be societies most vulnerable and targeted group due to systemic racism and gender discrimination.

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December 13,2018

ONWA Compels MMIWG NI Commissioners to be brave

OTTAWA, Dec-13-2018 - Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA) Executive Director, Cora Lee McGuire-Cyrette inspired the heart and honoured the families of the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls National Inquiry (MMIWG-NI) in Ottawa today.

ONWA does not speak on behalf of Indigenous women, we speak to Indigenous women’s issues. The organization has always spoken from the perspective of what can we do to help in the daily lives of Indigenous women; “We talk with Indigenous women. We listen to them. And then we take action.”

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December 12, 2018

ONWA views OIPRD Review of TBPS as an opportunity to build trust

The Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA) is committed to working with Thunder Bay Police Service (TBPS) to ensure the recommendations of the Broken Trust report, released today, are fully implemented. The report acknowledges something we already know - Indigenous women and girls confront racism every day and that racism ends in violence and injustice.

The independent review examined 37 sudden death investigations conducted by the Thunder Bay Police Service (TBPS).  Gerry McNeilly, Independent Review Director, recommends that nine of those cases be re-investigated.  Four of the nine cases put forward to be re-opened, involve the deaths of Indigenous women.

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November 27, 2018

Indigenous Women Fight Everyday to End Violence

Indigenous women in Ontario are on the front line of a daily battle against violence in their lives that so many Canadians don’t see and don’t understand.

As the executive director of the Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA) I’ve witnessed our organization grow into a force that provides a respectful safe place for Indigenous women as safety is paramount to healing and addressing violence.

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November 20, 2018

ONWA at Healing Our Spirit Worldwide Conference in Sydney, Australia

The Ontario Native Women's Association (ONWA) from Ontario, Canada will be attending the Healing Our Spirit Worldwide ( conference in Sydney, Australia November 26-29, 2018.

ONWA is a not-for-profit organization that was established in 1971 to empower and support Indigenous women and their families through cultural restoration. As an agency, ONWA supports and empowers youth to have a voice.

“The Eighth Gathering of Healing Our Spirit Worldwide will bring together Indigenous peoples from around the world to celebrate the power of Indigenous knowledge and wisdom and to share stories with pride and purpose”.

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October 23, 2018

Ground Breaking Technology & Tradition Connect to Help More Indigenous Women

Today, Talk4Healing, a crucial helpline for Indigenous women, launched new text and chat technology that will increase the ability to provide support and services across Ontario.

“Technology is having epochal changes on how people communicate and is a human story that is evolving every day. Talking on the telephone to connect with others is fast becoming a trend of the past,” explains Debra Vermette, Executive Director of Beendigen. “Women now have a choice in how they connect with the helpline. A live, trained counsellor can talk with callers over the phone, text through mobile device, or chat via the Talk4Healing website’s Live Chat, providing culturally sensitive crisis counselling, advice and support.”

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Check out these affiliated sites:


Ontario Indigenous Women's Water Commission



Breaking Free, Breaking Through






ONWA complies with AODA requirements. Click here for AODA requirements.

Click here to provide feedback on AODA.

Funding provided by:

Ontario Trillium Foundation




Connect with us

Head Office: 150 City Road P.O. Box 15-684, City Road, Fort William First Nation, ON, P7J 1J7
Phone: (807) 577-1492 - Toll Free: 1-800-667-0816 - Fax: (807) 623-1104
Satellite Office: 380 Ray Blvd, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 4E6 - Phone: (807) 623-3442