Citizens Taking Action
posted: Wednesday, November 23, 2016
On Tuesday, November 22, 2016, James Favel and Scott Oseksy, members of the Bear Clan Patrol visited a group of Grade 8 students. Since December 2014, the Patrol has established a 12-member council, including three Elders from the original Bear Clan Patrol. The council formed in response to the expressed needs of the community for a safer, more secure environment, with goals of promoting and providing safety, conflict resolution, mobile witnessing and crime prevention, maintaining a visible presence on the streets, providing an early response to situations, as well as providing rides and resource referrals.
The students had been discussing the concept of community, and what it means to be an individual within a community. They took an in-depth look at SJR as a community, and then looked outward, considering their roles in the broader community of Winnipeg.
As an example of a group taking responsibility for their community, we invited the Bear Clan to speak with students about the community they patrol, and the difference they have begun to see since the group was resurrected after the death of Tina Fontaine.
Scott has been with the group for almost a year. “I’m just giving back, giving back to the community. I just enjoy knowing people are safe.” James, Bear Clan Patrol’s co-founder, told stories of some of the realities members of the patrol face every night. As well as leading others to help make a tangible difference in the community, one of his goals is to educate young people so they can stay out of harm’s way.
Students’ feedback after the presentation was encouraging: they reported understanding that someone out there in our city is truly helping people of all walks of life, without judgment. They felt encouraged and inspired that a group exists that can be counted on to help anyone in our community.
SJR is collecting items to be given to the Bear Clan Patrol who will distribute them to youth and adults at risk. Should you have any of the below items, please drop them off no later than Monday, November 28, to the box outside of the Middle School office:
Toilet paper, feminine hygiene products, toques, mitts, scarves, toothpaste, toothbrushes, blankets, individually wrapped snack foods or anything else you may have.