Randy Coker introduced David Bradley and Amanda Misnakoshkang as today's guest speakers.  Randy met David first at Sir Wilfred University where they were students and roommates.  David is the founder of the Outland Youth Employment Program (OYEP) with 20 years of success providing land-based education, training and work opportunities for high school aged Indigenous youth.  OYEP is a six week experience provided in a very supportive space that replicates various work environments.  David has worked in very remote villages, rough roads where accessibility is by plane only, miserable conditions, lack of water and hope.  David got together with Indigenous leaders to develop a program to help teenagers, providing serious job skills and exposure to the working world and to provide optimism among the youth.  The program has received special recognition and support from the Lt. Governor of Ontario.  Joanne and Randy have been involved by providing a session on finances. 
David started the program in 1985 as a Canadian with others to reconcile with those who were here first.  He was the program's first employee.  David is very appreciative of the opportunity to work in the north among people in the north.  There has been growth in all of us.  When you work alongside people, you see the problems and you are compelled to help.  That is what fuels David.  The program started with 18 youth from 9 communities across Ontario.  After a 6 day break, all 18 came back!  An important accomplishment.  Second year students became mentors for first year students.  They had experience and the dynamic was important, although unexpected.  There have been 610 graduates of the program across Canada.  They just finished their 21st summer.  They have planted over 2 million trees, a huge accomplishment.  Over 100 First Nations have participated in the program from across Canada, all on a journey.  It has been a privilege for David to work with Randy on this program and to learn of Randy's background as an Indigenous child himself.  Thank you to Randy and Joanne for their very important contributions.
Amanda Misnakoshkang is from First Nation Long Lake #58, a graduate of OYEP and a graduate of Lakehead University in Environmental Studies.  A single mother of three who appreciates, because of COVID, being able to teach her children in the traditional manner.  Amanda is committed to breaking the cycle and acknowledges that she couldn't have done anything without the experience and support from OYEP.
Amanda shared her story.  She was raised in Thunder Bay by a non-Indigenous family.  As a teenager, she started to get into trouble, but in 2006 she entered the Outland Ranger Program and had her best summer ever.  It awakened knowledge about her land and she learned forestry, fire fighting.  The program gave her a sense of belonging and a sense of community.  On she went to University and in 2020 graduated with a degree in Environmental Studies with a major in geography. Her children are ages 8, 4 and a toddler and the restrictions of COVID have given her the opportunity to teach her children, similar to how she learned through the Outland program.  What Amanda learned 13 years ago, she has carried forward to now.  Her children possess a perspective in nature and the environment and are more conscious about food and farming.  Amanda has Ojibwa heritage and she recognizes now the importance of being involved with her culture through her children.
Jo-Anne Wheeler thanked both David and Amanda for speaking to the Club today and sharing their insight.  Randy introduced her to Outland and in the 100th Anniversary Book on Page 78 there is mention of the program and the money that was contributed to help purchase needed software.  There is so much to learn about Orange Shirt Day, a campaign that began in 2013 to recognize Phyllis Webstad, who at the age of 6 years old in 1973, had her new shiny orange shirt taken away from her on her first day at St. Joseph Mission Residential School.  Orange Shirt Day is a day when we honour the Indigenous children who were sent away to residential schools in Canada, an opportunity for communities to come together in a spirit of reconciliation and hope.