Morinville hosts A Garden Tea Party for annual women’s conference

by Lucie Roy

The annual women’s conference was held Saturday at the Morinville Community Cultural Centre and included workshops, takeaways, luncheon, a Tea Bar and Ivy Mills singing a compilation of music selections.

Morinville FCSS presented A Garden Tea Party featuring Keynote speaker Sharon Morin on Planting the seeds of knowledge and gratitude.

women's conference

Emcee Sarah Hall spoke of the Mar. 8 International Women’s Day and how it is celebrated across the globe. In her presentation Hall said, “120 years ago people lived n a very different world to what we know now. A world few of us in Canada can imagine. Unfortunately, though so much has improved, there is still much work to be done, here, and across the globe. International Women’s Day is a day that we honour those who planted their seeds of change to benefit us and a day we are reminded to plant seeds of our own for women of the future. You will notice on your tables, that there are baskets of bread and vases of roses. We wanted to showcase the belief that everyone should have access to not only basic sustenance but also to the finer things in life, education, art, music, beauty. Give us bread but give us roses too. Bread and Roses is the poem, the song the speech that defined the women’s movement across the globe in the early 1900s.”

Keynote speaker Sharon Morin was born into a large politically active Metis family of eight and spent most of her youth participating in Metis political and cultural activities.

She was taught and mentored in traditional knowledge, politics and culture by many Elders, Knowledge Keepers and Community Activists, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous.

Morin spent 17 years at the Musee Heritage Museum as the Program Manager and Aboriginal Lead, developing curriculum-based educational and community-based programs.

She now works with Les Femme Michif Otipemsiwak-Women of the Metis Nation as a program coordinator bringing with her the belief of strong family ties and giving back to our community.

She spoke of Her mother, the late Senator Thelma Chalifoux, planting a seed and how this simple action creates an overflowing garden, artist Leah Dorian, the Kakesimokamik, The Healing Garden in St Albert, introduced a short video and more.

Introduced as women of the future at the event were Jillian Andrews and Ivy Mills.

Jillian Andrews is a student from MCHS studying TV production. Andrews put together a video for International Women’s Day on the theme Seeds of Change.

Ivy Mills, a student from Sturgeon Composite High School who volunteers at Higher Grounds and has been singing since the age of 5, has performed as Joseph in the MPS Joseph’s technicolour Dreamcoat, as well as local events and opening the Alberta Legislature with Canada.
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