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She Is Wise Nibwaakaa Inaadiziwin: 5th Annual Conference

Niagara Falls, ON – The Ontario Native Women’s Association’s (ONWA)’s 5th Annual She Is Wise Nibwaakaa Inaadisiwin Conference takes place January 22-24 at the Sheraton Fallsview in Niagara Falls, ON. The She Is Wise Annual Conference represents ONWA’s commitment to strengthening and building Indigenous Women's Leadership.

The theme for this year’s conference is honouring the roles Grandmothers, Mothers, Aunties, and Daughters play in preserving and protecting Mother Earth. She is us and we are her. When she is well, we are well. Women are the sacred carriers of water, without water life is not sustainable. The knowledge shared throughout the conference will enrich participant’s understanding of the vital historical roles Indigenous women have played and continue to play in sustaining life on Mother Earth. This year we acknowledge, honour, and celebrate Indigenous women as they take up their leadership roles protecting Mother Earth for generations to come. 

Nibwaakaa Inaadiziwin (she is wise in ways of life) captures the voices and perspectives of Indigenous women, that seek to change the narrative of violence, through collective cultural and gendered empowerment. It acknowledges the wisdom and intelligence of women, as well as the life-giving power she carries within her.

ONWA is committed to creating safe spaces for Indigenous women’s storytelling that are culturally grounded, gender-based, and trauma-informed. This training will build upon the work of Indigenous women; retelling a story that has largely gone untold and replenishing our bundles with wise practices that will support efforts to build Indigenous women’s leadership. In doing so, we envision empowered women, strong families, and safer communities. Learners can incorporate these wise practices into their work while continuing to support Indigenous women and their families.

Conference Highlights will include:

  • Knowledge Keepers Panel, Jan Longboat, Mohawk; Levinia Brown, Inuit; Ma-nee Chacaby, Anishinaabe; & Pearl Gabona, Métis

  • Keynote Speaker – Firebrand Grannies: Looking to our Past to Shape the Future, Kim Anderson

  • Water Teaching and Finding our Identity, Norma Jacobs

  • Indigenous Women’s Economic Development Forum - Keynote Speaker, Jenn Harper, Cheekbone Beauty; Panel, Karen Bird; Michelle Derosier; & Samantha Loney

  • Keynote Speaker – Holding Our World Together: Ojibwe Women in the Past and Future, Dr. Brenda Child

  • Keynote Speaker – Reconnecting to land and life in how we come to know, Dr. Kathy Absolon

  • Inuit Throat singers, Siqiniup Qilauta (Sunsdrum): Heidi Metcalfe; & Lynda Brown

  • “We are Guardians” Film Screening – A Journey of Hope Amidst Crisis

  • Youth Panel, Autumn Peltier; Makanalani Gomes; Riley Yesno; & Ta’kaiya Blaney

  • Keynote Speaker, Emma Morrison

  • Alicia Kayley and Sara Kae Interview followed by vocal performance

Keep up to date with this year’s She Is Wise Annual conference by following ONWA on social media or by visiting ONWA’s She Is Wise blog at:


For more information and media inquiries, contact: 

Andre Morriseau, Communications Manager

Ontario Native Women’s Association (ONWA)


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