An overview about “Garnet’s Journey”
Garnet Angeconeb is an Anishnaabe man from the Lac Seul First Nation near Sioux Lookout. He is a survivor of the Indian Residential School system. His story is not unique. But his ability and desire to tell that story, with a goal to educate and reconcile, is courageous and exceptional. On this website, Garnet has teamed up with his friend and colleague Ashley Wright, to achieve this goal. They have created this website to help all Canadians understand the Aboriginal experience through a lens that acknowledges our shared history, with a view to a brighter and peaceful future.
On this site, you will be able to see thirty videos, each between one and eight minutes long, in which Garnet describes his life as an Aboriginal man, and a residential school survivor. Through his eyes, we get a glimpse of his life on the trap line. Garnet tells us how, at age seven, he left his family to go to Indian residential school, where he was severely abused. We come to understand the dreadful impact his experiences at the school had on him, many other students, his family, and his community – an impact reflected in the health and education crises facing Aboriginal communities today.
Garnet tells us about the night he nearly died – a life-changing experience he had on a frozen lake, when he decided NOT to give in to anger and conflict, but rather to seek peace and reconciliation. He decided to journey forward by doing everything in his power to make Canada a better country for his children and grandchildren.
Garnet channeled his pain and anger into a strong voice that stood up to the institutions that allowed crimes to be committed against him. Courageously, he spoke out against his dormitory supervisor, eventually seeing the man go to jail for sexually abusing him and eighteen other boys. Garnet takes us on a journey of deep introspection, including sharing with us to the reasons he forgives his abuser.
Garnet is a natural communicator and a natural leader. His character and actions are those of a true peacemaker. He and Ashley have collaborated to bring Garnet’s story to these pages so that Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people can understand the connection between the past and the present, and can create a future that is informed by our shared history.
To get started, watch the “Garnet: An Introduction” video on this, the Home page. Then proceed to the Chapters/Videos link to choose what topic you want to hear about. You can watch it all in one day, or watch one video each day. It’s set up mostly in chronological order, but you can see the title and description of each video to decide what interests you at any time. Remember, each video is between one and eight minutes long.