An engaged room of students listen while an instructor presents in the Migizii Agamik - Bald Eagle Lodge.

How you'll make a difference

Land and Water Land-based Education runs from October to June. October, November and December will be training-focused and our engagement with the students will happen from January to June. We have plenty of engaging online workshops and activities, plus we are hoping learn outside on the Land in and around Winnipeg as COVID-19 policies allow! 

You will have the opportunity to: 

  • engage in land-based programming and learn about Indigenous people’s enduring relationships to place and land
  • explore your role in protecting land and water, and meet other young people committed to climate action
  • connect with like-minded university students, community youth, and high school students
  • co-facilitate creative programming at monthly lunch and learns, monthly full-day field trips from February to June, and an overnight camping trip in the spring

As part of our post-secondary team, you will have the opportunity to create resources for school aged youth! We will try them out as a team and present them virtually in classrooms.


The program begins in October with a half-day orientation. Training continues in November, virtually, with a four half-day training experience we call “This is Indigenous Land” during fall break. The program concludes in June with a celebration and debrief.

October – January: Orientation, lunch and learns, excursions

Gain experience creating land-based programming for school aged youth.

Feel supported by your post-secondary team at our monthly meetings, which provide opportunities for team building, reflection and training.

Time commitment
  • Three-hour orientation meeting in late October
  • Fall Break land-based experience (“This is Indigenous Land”)
  • Monthly three-hour social outing and/or training session

Fall Term Break (November): “This is Indigenous Land”

You will take part in “This is Indigenous Land,” a four-day land-based training experience consisting of a mix of urban and rural land-based education. This experience will provide opportunities to re-story Winnipeg as Indigenous land, re-root our relationships to land and each other, put Indigenous values like reciprocity into action, and develop a land ethic that includes urban spaces.

This is Indigenous Land is offered in collaboration with Indigenous Elders, knowledge-holders and other teachers for community youth and university students during Fall Term Break. Although most of the training will happen online, we are also hoping to meet outside on the Land. 

February – June: Monthly programming

Work with the team to create resources to share with R.B. Russell high school throughout the school year. Help promote Land-Based education within schools’ COVID-19 guidelines.

Time commitment
  • Monthly three-hour social outing and/or training session
  • Planning sessions with your resource planning group!

June: Celebration and debrief

The program will end with a celebration and a debrief with the post-secondary team members. By this time, strangers have become like family, and this is a good chance to discuss your growth with people who understand the experience.

Our coordinator

Nicki Ferland has a background in human, Aboriginal and Indigenous rights, Indigenous and anti-racist education, and Indigenous research.

Our past experiences

Examples of past programming include:

  • a visit to the Faculty of Engineering’s Alternative Village on the UM Fort Garry campus
  • a day trip to Shoal Lake 40 First Nation
  • an Elder-led tour of the Bannock Point petroforms site in Whiteshell Provincial Park

Examples of Online Activities 

Example Activity: 

  • Online workshop bringing in Indigenous Artists who represent and connect with the Land through their work, teachings and craft. 
  • Facilitate, participate in, and review at home activities such as sewing a medicine bag.

We offer the Land and Water program in partnership with the Winnipeg School Division.

We offer the Land and Water program in partnership with the Winnipeg School Division. Because we work with high school students who are minors, you must obtain a Police Information Check (PIC) and Child Abuse Registry Check to participate in this program.

The Winnipeg School Division will reimburse you for these costs, and the Community Engaged Learning program can also help cover your upfront fee, if needed.

Application Form

1. In the Land and Water Program, youth and post-secondary team members will participate in programming designed to explore their identities and concepts like intersectionality and privilege.

2. Everyone is welcome to apply, but we would like to especially encourage Indigenous students to apply since nearly 99% of R. B. Russell students are First Nations, Métis or Inuit.

3. Once we start a relationship with youth, we have a responsibility to be reliable, committed and consistent. Therefore, it is very important that post-secondary team members have the availability to volunteer about 10 hours per month (and more in some cases – e.g., land-based experience in the fall and camping trip in the spring).

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact:

Nicki Ferland, Community Service-Learning Coordinator, Indigenous
55 Chancellor’s Circle
Tel: 204-474-8660

Land and Water Application Form