Experiential KAIROS Blanket Exercise (KBE) goes virtual

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KAIROS launches “impactful” online KBE 

(Ottawa, ON) – KAIROS Canada launches its virtual KAIROS Blanket Exercise (vKBE) after six months of development, offering participants an alternative to the in-person KBE during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. 

Hosted on the Zoom platform, the vKBE has incorporated new interactive and engaging elements that visually and emotionally demonstrate the history of Indigenous peoples in Canada through colonization to present times. It is neither a webinar nor lecture but a live, interactive experience. 

“More than simply replicating our popular in-person KAIROS Blanket Exercise in an online form, we have created a powerful virtual version that some participants have called ‘more impactful than the in-person exercise,’” says Cherie Ratté, KAIROS’ KBE Regional Director – Alberta and the vKBE Lead. “It was critical for us to maintain the impact and participatory nature of the exercise, while ensuring that participants are well supported as they experience the history and shared stories.”  

The vKBE underwent extensive testing among KAIROS’ network and partners and started with a soft launch in January.  

“The response has been very positive,” says Ratté. “We are fully booked in February and most of March!” 

The vKBE is suitable for groups of 15 to 46 participants. vKBE facilitators support participants through online features and special measures such as group and individual check-ins, in addition to hosting virtual talking circles during the second half of the exercise.  

While the vKBE was developed in response to the physical distancing restrictions of COVID-19, it offers KAIROS a new opportunity to reach areas too remote for the in-person KBE and to facilitate cross-team training.  

KAIROS is presently booking vKBE sessions in April and beyond. Make a booking or request a quote for a private vKBE. For general enquiries, contact Jessica Pichard: jpichard@kairoscanada.org

Responding to the 1996 Report of the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, the Aboriginal Rights Coalition (which became part of KAIROS in 2001) worked with Indigenous elders and educators to develop an interactive way to learn the history that most Canadians are never taught. KAIROS and its partners have since offered the in-person KAIROS Blanket Exercise thousands of times, presenting Canada’s history from the perspective of Indigenous peoples from coast-to-coast-to-coast. Visit the KAIROS Blanket Exercise website

About KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives 

KAIROS is a social justice organization that includes ten Canadian churches and religious organizations. We are Indigenous people, settlers and newcomers in Canada working with people of faith or conscience all over the world for ecological justice and human rights. We deliberate on issues of common concern, advocate for social change and join with people of faith and goodwill in action for social transformation. Visit the KAIROS Canada website.  

Media contact

Cheryl McNamara, Media Coordinator, KAIROS Canada 
416-875-0097 (mobile), cmcnamara@kairoscanada.org 

Filed in: Indigenous Rights, Media Releases


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