HomeLLO/ONLC Conference 2017: A Step in the Right Direction

LLO/ONLC Conference 2017: A Step in the Right Direction

Over 140 participants from 38 organizations took part in the 2017 LLO/ONLC conference. The 3 day event offered 30 great workshops for LBS and ES Providers, practitioners, administrators, coordinators, volunteer tutors, and adult learners. The conference service staff at Brescia University College helped to ensure everything ran flawlessly.  The friendly kitchen staff provided amazing meals and the accommodations were very nice, clean and comfortable.

The conference wouldn't have run nearly as smooth without the hard work that Literacy Link South Central (LLSC) and Nokee Kwe Native Literacy Centre put in as co-hosts this year.  We can't thank you enough! 

Pedobnoque Shawbadees, from Saugeen Enjikendaaswiing Zhaang performed a traditional opening ceremonial fire and smudging to get things started on Thursday night. This was followed by a delicious indigenous meal which consisted of bison burgers, wild rice and a berry dessert.

NokeeKwe arranged performances by two Indigenous groups for Thursday evening.The first was a performance by the women of the +Positive Drum Circle, a group that included several student's in NokeeKwe's adult literacy class who met during the +Positive Voice Program. This program was designed to teach social media skills to promote a positive image of Urban Indigenous women. The group became very close, and after the first six week program, the +Positive Drum Circle was born to provide a way for +Positive Voice members past, present and future to continue to meet and share their stories of success.

The second performance was by men of Atlohsa Singers. Unlike the women, who each played individual drums, the Atlohsa Singers accompanied their songs by playing in unison on one large drum. This group, that met through Atlohsa Native Family Healing Services, consists of singers who have been with the group for a very long time, as well as some younger singers. 

There was much excitement at lunch on Friday, June 16th as Deb Matthews, Deputy Premier stopped by to make an announcement about increased funding to LBS programs -  befitting of this year's theme  'A Step in the Right Direction'!  After lunch she even  found the time to stop in at the Annual Student Meeting to hear from some of the students personally. Click here for more on the Annual Student Meeting.

LLSC invited the inspiring Dr. Bharati Sethi, an assistant professor at Kings College, University of Western Ontario, to be the guest speaker for Friday night's banquet. Dr. Sethi draws on her personal experiences to study immigrant women and mental health. She has worked as a community-based researcher for the last eight years. Her research interests are focused primarily on issues effecting immigrants/refugees to Canada’s urban/rural communities. She graciously shared her story of the many obstacles she encountered after immigrating to Canada from Mumbai, India as a Hotel Management student in Montreal, eventually fulfilling her goal of attaining a PhD and teaching at a university.

The guest speaker was followed by the Arnie Stewart Individual Achievement Awards which was handled by two lovely ladies - LLO Board President, Cathy Graham and Barb Stewart (Arnie Stewart's wife). Each learner in attendance was acknowledged and presented with a certificate as well as a 'Literacy. More than Words' pin. The pins were a fantastic 35th anniversary gift to Laubach Literacy Ontario from Yamaska Literacy Council in Quebec, who had 2 individuals attend the conference this year.

The evening finished off with Literacy Link South Central hosting a 'Literacy Feud' game that was very competitive and a lot of fun! 

Many thanks to our conference partner Ontario Native Literacy Coalition! We could not have done it without you. It has been a pleasure working with you.

The conference brochure and registration form are now available! Click on the links below to access.