How to be an Indigenous Ally

We at Gridworks Energy pride ourselves on our allyship, trust and respectful relationships that we have created with indigenous communities across Canada. We provide education, training and jobs to members of the communities that we work with. We help transition them to clean energy, self-determined economic development and a brighter, more sustainable future for future generations.

Clean Energy Solution

Indigenous communities have spent decades healing and dealing with the traumas that they have been forced through, due to colonization and assimilation. Traditionally the First Nations, Métis, Inuit etc. have been very connected to their lands and territories, always utilizing it the best way they can. They learn traditions passed down from generation to generation using resources with respect to ensure the longevity of these resources for future generations.

Clean energy not only provides the energy needs within indigenous communities, but it is also a route for indigenous peoples to be actively involved in an economy that doesn’t destroy our environment. It offers solutions to the traumas caused through colonization in a way that aligns with indigenous values.

What can you do?

Being an ally means supporting the ingenious community, amplifying indigenous voices and offering them a place to share without overpowering them. Here are a few important and simple acts that can make a huge difference in allyship and reconciliation:

  1. Educate yourself. School textbooks and curriculums don’t often include indigenous voices, leaving out their points of view and their struggles. This history tends to be whitewashed, making colonizers seem like saviors without any faults. It is important that you take the initiative to educate yourself and do research through a diverse lens.
  2. Participate with interest in Indigenous events and celebrations. Look into local community boards to see what is planned and how you can take part in learning about, advocating for and celebrating indigenous peoples in your community.
  3. Create space for indigenous voices and listen intently to the stories they tell. Understand the struggles and the inequalities that indigenous peoples go through. Listening is truly one of the most important and impactful things to do as an ally.
  4. Share Indigenous art and culture with respect to first nations ownership and representation.
  5. Don’t be silent. Just recognizing the inequalities Indigenous peoples face is not enough. Speak out. If you notice someone is acting racist and prejudiced towards black, indigenous and people of colour, say something. Confront their actions and stand up for what is right!
  6. Take meaningful action — go beyond acknowledgment. Focus on helping the community find solutions for obstacles that hinder indigenous rights.
  7. Use your platform. Social media platforms can reach thousands and sometimes millions of people. You can use your platform to advocate for change and raise awareness about indigenous rights. This goes beyond performative activism – include important petitions and resources on your pages. It is so simple and easy to make a massive impact through social media!

To learn more about Gridworks Energy and the work we do with indigenous communities, check out our Indigenous Communities Solar Program.

Do you part in being an ally and take action now!


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