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This was the first time after the Pandemic that the Caux Forum welcomed delegates to two sessions at the Initiatives of Change Conference Centre at Caux, Switzerland. More than 500 people attended.

Two IofC Canada board members, Mangalam Lena and YiYi Datar, and six individuals from the Global Indigenous Dialogue in Canada, attended its two sessions  ‘Healing the Wounds of the Past’ and ‘Trust and Integrity in Democracy’ from July 17 - 26th, 2023.

Rainbow Cardinal writes ‘so proud of our three youth that came as part of Global Indigenous Dialogue’

It was absolutely humbling and inspiring to be part of Caux Forum 2023 in Caux Switzerland. Just being there itself was an experience of a lifetime, but to be part of a beautiful yarning circle, the cultural night talent show, and leading the youth discussion ... absolutely mind-blowing. 

Lewis Cardinal, Elder Wil Campbell and I are all so proud of our three youth that came as part of Global Indigenous Dialogue, as I am sure that Uncle Shane Charles, Uncle Hewitt Whyman & Ron Lawler from Australia, are too. 

Hinauri Nehua-Jackson, Taryn Ghostkeeper-Dachuk and Elijah Ingram are three incredible young people who have so much wisdom and insight. 

Special thanks also to Dr Ian MacNairn for coming with us, for being part of our discussion panels, and also for supporting our Elders with such compassion and love. 

Taryn Ghostkeeper-Dachuk (Metis) - The most impactful moment….

It was an incredible honour to be invited by Initiatives of Change (IofC) in partnership with Global Indigenous Dialogue Canada, to Caux, Switzerland this summer. Here I was asked to facilitate a workshop along with other Indigenous Youth from around the world on reconciliation. IofC brought together community leaders and advocates from around the world to learn from one another and discover our ways in healing the wounds of the past. The incredible resilience of human beings was put on display with storytelling on the cultural impacts of matters such as Colonization, War, or corruption in government. I was able to share my story on reconciliation in Canada from the effects of Colonization and Residential Schools on Indigenous People. To have so many individuals from around the world listen to my story and reflect on the hardships my people have faced was an overwhelming experience. The most impactful moment for me was seeing these people embrace my culture in the form of a prayer ceremony every morning, where we offered up tobacco to the ancestors and cleansed in a smudge over the fire. 

Seeing my culture and stories received with such love and acceptance was a feeling I will never forget, and I returned to my country knowing I had made my ancestors proud in keeping my culture alive and sharing it with the world. From the bottom of my heart, thank you Global Indigenous Dialogue and Initiatives of Change for bringing us all together and allowing me to experience such a remarkable event. 


Hinauri Nehua-Jackson (Maori/Cree) - I was truly honoured that the elders acknowledged me as a strong Māori person….


On July 2023, I had the honour and privilege of being the youth representative for initiatives of Change Canada, where it was held in Switzerland. I am so grateful to the team who worked behind the scenes taking care of me and the elders who not only supported me, but reassured me that my voice mattered in regards to the indigenous dialogue - healing the wounds of the past. As an Māori person, from Aotearoa New Zealand, I was truly honoured that the elders acknowledged me as a strong Māori person and candidate to support and advocate the views and concerns of the tangata whenua (people of the land) of Canada.

"I always thought reconciliation is a global thing. But reconciliation can also be a communal thing. Just sitting together and appreciating the other can be reconciliation. I go back home from Caux with a lot of hope."


Yi Yi Datar - I need to wake up and walk!

Incredulous would describe what I felt when I was asked on short notice, if I would go the Caux Conferences on ‘Healing the Wounds of the Past’ and ‘Trust and Integrity in Democracy’ from July 17 - 26th, 2023. I had just finally decided to “sign up” to be a member of Initiatives of Change Canada on their website, and two days later attended the AGM and decided I was ready to serve where needed.

I believe the philosophy and practices of the Initiative of Change is very relevant to the needs of those who seek to better the situations they face. I see the many delegates who came to Caux as attendees or even as presenters, are there to seek a better solution to their problems. It was good to be able to walk up to anyone there in attendance and have a deep conversation. There were no barriers of any kind. I wish the whole world could experience that openness, and I hope that when we all go back to our respective places, that we will maintain that welcome and open attitude. Openness to learn, self-reflection and correction of our own negative behaviors and attitudes would go a long way in healing the wounds of the past as well as reestablishing integrity in institutions where we work.

I was impressed by the leaders in the community groups who offered prayer and compassionate support to those who were distraught and showed no offence even when insults were flung at them for their faiths. I think their genuine kindness and care really won over that person. I was also very glad to see the compassion and understanding offered by the various faith leaders.

I wish to see more leaders of institutions come out and sincerely come and admit their misdeeds and apologize for them and offer restitution…maybe for the next Caux conference?

I think from my Christian faith background, I believe Jesus was just asking us to be authentic children of the loving, caring, generous, gracious, just, and merciful, Creator. He asks us to love our neighbors and enemies and love is an action and not a feeling.