Our guest speaker this morning is a fellow Rotarian.  She has been a member of the RC of Belleville since 2009, was on their board from 2013 to 2017 and has been the chair of their Indigenous Peoples Partnerships Committee, which is the equivalent of our National Committee since 2012.  In 2017 she established the IPP cluster bringing together like-minded Rotary Clubs from Belleville, Trenton, Wellington and Palgrave…and most recently the RC of Cataraqui-Kingston, realizing the importance and the impact of working together to support more indigenous communities.      
She also looks after the KIVA micro loans for the Belleville club.
Aside from Rotary, she has a diploma as a Chemical Laboratory Technician, worked 10 years for Du Pont and became manager of the laboratory for non asbestos products at Akzo Nobel and was the first female in the company with a Forklift Driver License.
 
For the last ten years her company Wartenberg Business Consulting has been working with different Indigenous communities, providing workshops for start-ups and existing businesses, and helping with business and marketing plans.  
 
On a personal note, it has been a true pleasure to work with our guest speaker this last year as part of Indigenous Peoples Partnership Cluster…she is a delight.   
The Indigenous Peoples Partnership Cluster was founded in 2012. 
Learn more about this group and its vision and objectives at rotaryindigenouscluster.org. Their main aims are;
 
 
When the IPPC connects with a community, they maintain their relationship.  They listen to their priorities, rather than deciding what they need.  It’s a challenge to bring things to our northern communities.  Other challenges include concerns that communities may have regarding trust in non-indigenous people.
Projects have been many and varied.  Communities that have worked with the IPPC include Fort Albany, Eabametoong (Fort Hope), Little Trout Lake and many others. Birgit showed how a simple pair of skates for a youngster can bring families and then the community together.
 
Another particularly successful project which C-K Rotary participated in was the laptop drive for the Nibinamik Education Center, which resulted in donations of over 100 pieces of technology such as laptops and tablets. Birgit also mentioned that carrying out the Kairos Blanket Exercise, which they did on Tyendinaga, can lead to a better understanding of colonialism.
The Indigenous Peoples Partnership includes the Rotary Clubs of Belleville, Trenton, Wellington, Palgrave, and Cataraqui-Kingston.
 
Lise Coghlan offered our thanks to Brigit, with our traditional loaf of bread.