Nation to Nation Bike Tour update- Akwesasne playing a key role as the launch community
Very soon, the first-ever KAIROS and Otesha Nation to Nation Bike Tour gets underway! 12 Indigenous and non-Indigenous youth will start in Akwesasne and end in Tyendinaga, Kanien’kehaka (Mohawk) communities that share the waters of the St Lawrence and Lake Ontario. In between, stops are being hosted by non-Indigenous communities and groups.
The participants will be learning and sharing as they go, offering a new version of the Blanket Exercise in the communities they visit. There’s more information available on the KAIROS site. All events are currently posted to the KAIROS calendar and we’ll be adding more information as specifics are confirmed. Nation to Nation Bike Tour events posted to this calendar are open to all.
After four days of programming in Akwesasne, the tour gets underway on July 31st with smudging, Mohawk prayer and opening address, words from Grand Chief Mike Mitchell, and songs from the A’nowarakowa Arena youth group singers. Local media will be present. Many thanks to Akwesasne radio CKON-FM 97.3 for an excellent interview on the bike tour this past week!
In the words of the Akwesasne planners, “ This is an important event as it acknowledges a new friendship that was created and teachings shared between Mohawk members of the community and the KAIROS youth group. Community support will be present to meet, give thanks and to help support the visitors’ journey.”
In turn, the KAIROS community would like to say nia:wen, thank you, to the Akwesasne community for their gift of starting the group’s time together in this good way. The community and the people are showing enormous generosity to the riders and KAIROS, as ceremonies, teachings and hosting are all shared. We also offer thanks to Tyendinaga for hosting the end of the tour. Without these good words and actions, we could not continue KAIROS’ commitment to a new relationship built on justice and respect.
KAIROS’ gratitude also goes to the church communities who will also host the bikers. There are Lutheran, United and Presbyterian churches along the way who are hosting and caring for the riders. Thank you! We’ll update information about all the generous hosts as it’s confirmed.
And of course, the people who have offered donations to help cover the riders’ expenses are also very much a part of this work. Any amount helps and you can still donate!
For more information, contact Katy Quinn, Indigenous Rights Coordinator, at 613 235-9956 x224 or firstname.lastname@example.org