Walking in the Woods
A Métis JourneyBook - 2006
Reflecting on his evolving identity as a human being, a Canadian and a M#65533;tis westerner, Herb Belcourt tells the remarkable story of one familys enduring connection to the dramatic history of western Canada. Belcourt traces his ancestry directly to an early French-Canadian voyageur and his Cree-M#65533;tis wife who lived in Ruperts Land after 1800. The eldest of ten children, Belcourt grew up in a small log home near Lac Ste. Anne during the Depression. His father purchased furs from local First Nations and M#65533;tis trappers and, with arduous work, began a family fur trading business that survives to this day. When Belcourt left home at 15 to become a labourer in coal mines and sawmills, his father told him to save his money so he could work for himself. Over the next three decades, Belcourt began a number of small Alberta businesses that prospered and eventually enabled him to make significant contributions to the M#65533;tis community in Alberta.Belcourt has devoted over 30 years of his life to improving access to affordable housing and further education for aboriginal Albertans. In 1971, he co-founded Canative Housing Corporation, a non-profit agency charged with providing homes for urban aboriginal people who confronted housing discrimination in Edmonton and Calgary. In 2004, Belcourt and his colleagues established the Belcourt Brosseau M#65533;tis Awards Fund, a $13-million endowment with a mandate to support the educational dreams of M#65533;tis youth and mature students in Alberta and to make a permanent difference in the lives of M#65533;tis Albertans.Awarded an honourary doctorate of laws by the University of Alberta in 2001, Belcourt is also the 2006 recipient of a National Aboriginal Achievement Award for Housing. In this memoir, Walking In the Woods, he describes Albertas opportunities with admiration while speaking bluntly about the loss of aboriginal and M#65533;tis land in western Canada, and about the difficult consequences of generations of interracial misunderstanding in the West. Addressed to young M#65533;tis, and to all Canadians, he speaks with compelling candour about his love for this country, and his concerns about its future.
Publisher: Edmonton : Brindle & Glass, c2006
Branch Call Number: 971.200497 BEL NVD
Characteristics: 213 p. : ill., map, geneal. table ; 23 cm