The Elders Council for Kenora Chiefs Advisory (KCA) met last week to discuss the renaming of the 24/7 Street Patrol to properly reflect the hard work being done in Kenora.
It has become clear within the first few months of operations that the Bear Clan governance model was not necessarily best suited for what would work and be successful in Kenora. We want to ensure the model that is executed in Kenora, is both successful and best meets the needs of our vulnerable population.
Since this patrol was first brought to Kenora in 2016 with the disappearance of Delaine Copenace, the KCA Board of Directors and Elders Council felt the new name and logo needed to encompass and honour her spirit. To honour Delaine and her dotem (clan), the decision to rename this initiative the Kenora Makwa Patrol was made.
Delaine’s mother, Anida Ross, joined the Elders to share her vision of the new name and logo. She also worked with a talented local artist, Chrissy MacLeod to create the new logo that honours both Delaine’s dotem and Anishinaabe name, Mino-Kiizhigo-Kwe (Good Sky Spirit Woman). KCA would like to acknowledge Anida’s support and advocacy for the Kenora Makwa Patrol as she sits on the community council representing Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women and Girls (MMIWG).
KCA Elder, Allan White spoke of the traditional protocols that took place during the official launch of the Street Patrol in September 2020 under the Whitecap, the “makwa was honoured during this ceremony…we could feel the spirit of the bear around the arbour.” He also provided a reminder to “honour and feast makwa, as the bear will walk with us during times of crisis.” Community Council Elder, Tommy Keesick shared that this change “goes beyond the scope of a name” and that this new “logo is powerful healing…as the bear provides healing and protection.”
The Kenora Makwa Patrol is very grateful for the work and collaboration that has been done with the Winnipeg Bear Clan Patrol, and look forward to continue to supporting each other’s work and initiatives. The Kenora Makwa Patrol staff, Community Council and Elders Council will be working together to create a new mission and vision statement that reflects the community-driven patrol.
Senior Executive Assistant and Communications Lead, Kenora Chiefs Advisory