“Tsi nén:we wa’kwarihwaientáhkwen – Our Future – Our Responsibility”
By Aleisha Pannozzo
Nestled along the beautiful St. Lawrence River is Akwesasne, a Mohawk territory that straddles the borders of Ontario, Quebec and New York State. On the Canadian side, the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne (MCA) is the community-elected government that represents the three districts within Akwesasne: Kawehno:ke (Cornwall Island), Kana:takon (St. Regis), and Tsi Snaihne (Snye). With 12 district chiefs and 1 Grand Chief, the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne stands as the unwavering voice of its community, advocating for their interests and preserving the rich integrity of their Mohawk heritage.
They have nine different departments that are responsible for overseeing community programs. The Mohawk Council of Akwesasne's Environment Program plays a crucial role in protecting and enhancing the natural environment within their territory. The program uses Ohen:ton Karihwateh:kwen (The Words That Come Before All Else) as their environmental framework and Sken:nen (Peace), Kasatstensera (Power) and Ka’nikonriio (Good Mind) as their guiding principles.
One of their current projects involves the Black Ash Stewardship Survey, which aims to assess the community's knowledge of the cultural uses and challenges facing the Black Ash species in the context of the present climate. This survey will aid the Black Ash Stewardship Plan, funded by the Aboriginal Fund for Species at Risk. The significance of this effort is heightened by the fact that Black Ash was recently declared an endangered species in Ontario due to the destructive Emerald Ash Borer infestation in the eastern and southern parts of the province.
Furthermore, the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne is actively engaged in the Great River Rapport initiative, a collaborative project focused on monitoring and reporting on the health of the St. Lawrence River. By contributing their local knowledge and insights about the river's well-being, they play a vital role in the broader efforts to protect and preserve this important waterway.
By being proactive in their environmental stewardship efforts and actively collaborating with other organizations, the Mohawk Council of Akwesasne demonstrates their commitment to safeguarding their natural resources and maintaining the ecological integrity of their ancestral lands. Their holistic approach, rooted in their cultural values and traditions, sets an example for responsible environmental management and conservation efforts for their community and beyond.
Please stay tuned for Part 2 of our blog were we will delve deeper into the MCA's inspiring work and dedication to preserving their heritage and environment.
Learn more about our new interns driving communication at A2A!
Hello everyone! We are excited to connect with you and share some exciting news. We have brought on two interns who will help play a crucial role in shaping our communication efforts over the next few months so that we can engage our audiences, create meaningful content and inspire you to take action!
I am thrilled to have this opportunity to connect with you and share my journey as a passionate advocate for nature and conservation. My name is Aleisha Pannozzo, and I am excited to be one of the two newest members of the A2A Collaborative. As the Communications Lead, I am eager to promote our efforts to protect and preserve the beautiful Algonquin to Adirondack region.
Since I was little, nature always held a special place in my heart. Camping introduced me to the joys of connecting with the outdoors and appreciating its simple pleasures. Whether I am sitting by the campsite with a cup of coffee and a good book (and plenty of bug spray!), hiking through lush trails, or meditating on a paddle board in the middle of a serene lake, being in nature brings me a deep sense of peace, fulfilment, and hope. When not immersed in the natural world, you can find me in the gym, crocheting holiday-themed decor, cooking delicious vegan meals or exploring the latest addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
In high school, I became consumed with negative news about the climate and the environment. From melting sea ice in the Arctic to a worldwide decline in wildlife species, I knew I had to do something. Determined to be part of a greater movement, I completed my Bachelor's Degree in environmental science at the University of Guelph. I wanted to equip myself with the skills and knowledge needed to make a meaningful impact in the environmental field.
I call myself a passionate environmental generalist. I am interested in policy, sustainability, climate change, conservation and environmental justice. I desire to create an equitable and compassionate world, which is why I am also passionate about social justice and animal welfare. As stewards of humanity, we bear a profound moral obligation to safeguard not only one another and our planet but also the prosperity of future generations. Even though our actions can cause irreparable harm, we can also create significant impacts, and we must be hopeful about our potential. I look forward to working with the Algonquin to Adirondack Collaborative over the next few weeks— I hope to inspire the next generation of environmentalists, increase our impact and ignite positive change within our communities.
Hi everyone, my name is Erin and I am excited to be one of the two newest team members of A2A. I am the Conservation Programs Coordinator for the Algonquin to Adirondacks Collaborative. I have always loved nature. As a kid, I spent as much time as I could outdoors. I have always enjoyed outdoor activities such as camping, hiking and kayaking. I also enjoy reading, traveling, writing and photography.
In high school, I was heavily involved in the environmental studies program. I learned so much about the environment and developed a passion for conservation and preservation. I enjoy spending time outdoors, so it made sense for me to feel a need to respect and protect nature. I want everyone to be able to experience the joy that I feel when being outdoors, including future generations.
I graduated in 2019 from King's University with a degree in Environmental Studies and a concentration in biology. This program helped me broaden my knowledge and comprehension of the natural world. I am passionate about conservation, animal welfare, social justice and sustainable agriculture. This is my first job in the environmental field, so I look forward to making connections, spreading awareness and learning along the way. We are seeing increasing amounts of environmental issues in the world— sometimes I feel hopeless, sometimes the problems seem too complicated, but I truly hope I can make a positive impact.