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Clubs & Groups: Settlers Taking Action and Responsibility at Trent (START)

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Settlers Taking Action and Responsibility at Trent (START)
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March 22, 2023
Clubs & Groups: Settlers Taking Action and Responsibility at Trent (START)

Settlers Taking Action and Responsibility at Trent (START) is a student and community group located at Trent University. We meet every other week on Zoom to discuss issues related to colonialism, systemic racism, and violence against Indigenous and marginalized groups. The intention of this group is for students to learn how to develop better relationships with Indigenous peoples and themselves as settlers. Through our meetings we aim to change the narrative of what it means to be a settler by accepting responsibility and taking action to work towards developing positive relationships between all people. START was initially developed through the office of Spiritual Affairs and the First Peoples House of Learning (FPHL). Now it is a working group through Kawartha World Issues Center (KWIC).

At our meetings we often discuss a current event that is affecting Indigenous peoples. During our most recent meeting, we returned to the Wet’suwet’en pipeline that is being installed along the West Coast. In this discussion we speculated the potential outcomes, and wondered why this story has not been in the media lately. Another thing we do at each of our meetings is we learn an Anishnabemowin word. This is an important thing to do as learning a person’s language can serve as a gesture that demonstrates your commitment to developing a reciprocal relationship with them. Kyle Los, an active member of the START community said, “As someone of settler descent who wanted to learn about being an ally to Indigenous peoples, I feel truly fortunate to have found START for the insight they’ve provided.” 

Talking about the dark history of settler colonialism can be very difficult and challenging. At START we provide a safe space to explore the mixed emotions that often arise when thinking about these difficult subjects. One of our current members, Ben Peltz exclaimed, “As a community member and Trent alumnus who has worked with Indigenous people for a number of years, I appreciate how START provides an open and friendly place to learn and raise awareness about our shared history and culture.” In his experience, START has been a safe and comfortable place to continue learning how to navigate the difficult history in Canada.

If you cannot make it to our meetings, you can follow us on Instagram or Facebook to hear about our events that we are planning. We aim to host a variety of events throughout the school year to raise awareness for contemporary Indigenous issues. One event you should look out for that is currently in the planning process is our film screening. More information about this event will be available on our social medias as it develops. 

Whether you are a current student, alumni, or community member, if you are curious about how you can better understand your place in settler colonialism you should join us in our conversations. 

Arthur Spring Elections 2024
Miracle Territory April 20th
Severn Court (October-August)
Theatre Trent 2023/24
Arthur News School of Fish
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Arthur Spring Elections 2024
Miracle Territory April 20th
Severn Court (October-August)
Theatre Trent 2023/24
Arthur News School of Fish
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