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Henry Skywater (South)

A peaceful man who wears his serenity on his sleeve; Henry’s disposition is one that oozes with insight and a reassuring friendly and inviting smile. He is a man who is at peace with himself and his life. He is the type of person that you would want to spend time with or spend time talking and asking questions.

He speaks so calmly and convincingly of his grandfather being his role model for many reasons; introducing and teaching him the traditional way of life, showing him “our way” and seeing that his grandfather “had it in his heart”. Henry is very poignant in giving credit to the influence of many Elders in his life even when he was young and did not see the significance they have on people’s lives.

As he progressed in his journey in life he appreciates and understands the challenges that “Sun Dancing and Sweat Lodges” have in our lives. He identifies the need for our People “to get over alcoholism, drug use and family violence”. He sees the effect that alcohol has on people and how important it is for us to talk about it and make the changes we need to make.

There was a time when we did not have “confidentiality” that we have today; he disagrees with this idea because there was a time when “the community knew of everyone’s problems so that everyone could help out”. This is what the healing process is all about.

“I care about people” and “there is a time for learning and some people don’t want to learn”. “We must talk about family violence to get over it and deal with it.”

“We are going in the right direction, but how do we get all the people to follow that direction.” This is a challenge for us all; leadership, community workers, our families.

Henry is very pleased that our people are beginning to use our history, our traditional ways and teachings. He sees this as a very positive move and has a vision that it will continue in our communities and in our homes.