THUNDER BAY – Isabel Okanese is on a mission. The Cree woman is walking across Canada to raise awareness about the issue of lateral violence in the First Nations, non-status and Métis communities. Lateral violence is the verbal, mental, emotional, spiritual as well as physical abuse that happens between people.
Isabel Okanese lives in Victoria British Columbia, and the walk across Canada has started at “Mile Zero” in Victoria. She will walk six thousand kilometres to Halifax Nova Scotia. She plans to arrive on the East Coast in October.
Her walk is called Miyo-wicehtowin. It is a Cree word that means “Living in harmony together”.
Okanese’s intent is to spark discussion about lateral violence within First Nations communities along her journey across the country.