For immediate release
March 30, 2020

Treaty Five Territory, Thompson, MB Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak Inc. (MKO) is collaborating with the newly-developed health entity called Keewatinohk Inniniw Minoayawin Inc. (KIM) to develop informative, accurate, and consistent messaging for Northern First Nations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Hearing the daily news about the COVID-10 pandemic can take it’s toll on people’s overall wellness,” said Grand Chief Garrison Settee. “I am proud to announce that MKO and KIM have developed a special radio program that celebrates and honours Northern First Nations culture, language, and legends.”

This special program, called “Knowledge Keepers,” will premiere on NCI FM on:Knowledge Keepers information

  • Monday, March 30
  • Wednesday, April 1
  • Friday, April 3

The show will run from 5:30 to 5:45 pm.

Each week, MKO’s Duke Beardy, Manager of the Traditional Healer Program, will host the week’s featured Knowledge Keeper. The guest will share a beloved legend from a Northern First Nation, in either the Cree or Dene language.

The first edition of the show will feature Knowledge Keeper David Blacksmith from the Pimicikamak Cree Nation. He will share a beloved Northern Cree story called “The Legend of Rolling Head (Cih cip sci kwan).”

“We are pleased to bring our stories and our First Nations languages to the airways,” shared Duke Beardy. “Having our Knowledge Keepers share these stories reawakens our legends and celebrates our languages. Returning to our traditional teachings, listening to the meaning behind each story, and feeling the beliefs—this may bring comfort and help reduce community anxiety during this pandemic. Traditional healing through storytelling touches our hearts. It provides emotional, mental, and spiritual support, but also inspires hope.”

MKO is committed to providing up-to-date information on COVID-19 on our social media accounts and on a new webpage created for this purpose.