Resident Ava

Ava, an Indigenous offender at Edmonton Institution for Women who is enrolled in the Pathways program.

Video transcript

Back in Touch. 

Pathways to Healing.

Resident • Pathways
Offender • Pathways

When I came here, I started to reconnect. I started to smudge every day. I started attending a drum group. And it just kind of opened my soul back up. It's just a good feeling to be back in touch with something that I lost.

Hi, my name is Ava.

So for me, I pushed away my spirituality, my culture, my family, and I just stayed with what I knew in the city. I quit going home to the reserve. I quit participating in anything that made me feel whole. It took a lot of work for me to get to here. I had to do a lot of programming, a lot of digging deep within myself to touch base with where I wanted to be at from where I was.

Honestly, being here saved my life. I came here and once I realized that all these resources were open to me, I started opening up in my programs. You know, I started going to see the elders every day, being around them, listening and learning. And drum group was a big part of me finding myself again. Being there, drumming, feeling, you know, like the beat of the drum and the songs and learning all the songs that I used to know and I forgot and you know, like just being a part of that. It really helped me to calm myself, to open my heart back up.

You know, walking the red road takes a lot of work. So participating in ceremony and stuff kind of just brings you back to yourself, helps you focus on balancing your medicine wheel.

There's still a lot in there that just needs to come out, but it feels good to be a part of the community again, to be in contact with people who know that this is what I need and they know how to help me. You really have to work for everything you're going to  get. If you want it, you can get it here.






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