SILR 2024 Gathering

Thu, Mar 21, 2024 - Fri, Mar 22, 2024

2024 SILR Gathering

Theme: Calling in Language Warriors from the Four Directions

A Gathering for Indigenous Language Champions, Speakers, Learners and Language Advocates

Coming Together to Share, Learn, Connect and Collaborate

Let's Gather To:

  • Explore the connection of mind, body and spirit in language, land and culture
  • Raise awareness on the importance of language revitalization
  • Share traditional and modern language learning and teaching strategies and resources: language learning, land-based teaching, and technology learning
  • Establish enduring connections and build collaborative communities of practice for continual engagement and support in language revitalization efforts.



  • Registration includes a light breakfast and lunch for the two days of the gathering!
  • Dinner and Gala tickets are $75 and sold separately!


The University of Alberta respectfully acknowledges that we are located on Treaty 6 territory, a traditional gathering place for diverse Indigenous peoples including the Cree, Blackfoot, Métis, Nakota Sioux, Iroquois, Dene, Ojibway/ Saulteaux/Anishinaabe, Inuit, and many others whose histories, languages, and cultures continue to influence our vibrant community.


Day One Pipe Ceremony

With Elder Bob Cardinal


Enjoy your time and connect with each other and exhibitors and vendors!

*Enoch Ball room cleared to prepare for Gala*

Check In, Register, Network

Welcome & Opening Remarks - MC Sandra Yellowhorn

Provided by 2024 SILR Gathering Master of Ceremonies - Sandra Yellowhorn

Qulliq Lighting Ceremony

Lighting and Welcome from SILR Advisory Council Edna Elias

Welcome from the U of A

Dr. Florence Glanfield

Welcome from SILR

By Pamela McCoy Jones

Day One Keynote

Dr Leroy Little Bear


International Decade of Indigenous Languages

Barbara Fillion of CCUNESCO Opens for Youth Panel

Youth Panel

Aiyana Twigg & Chaz Prairie Chicken


Lunch Prayer by Molly Chisaaky, SILR Advisory Council

Lunch Buffet served in hallway

Rupertsland Institute: La Laang di Michif and Michif Revitalization and Resources

Michif is the distinct Indigenous language of the Métis Nation. This endangered language deeply connects to Métis people’s community, culture, and nationhood. Rupertsland Institute is dedicated to revitalizing the Michif language in Alberta through courses, educational resources, videos, and more to support lifelong learners of all backgrounds. This session will be an opportunity to explore the initiatives that Rupertsland Institute is leading in Michif language revitalization and how you can get connected.

Levi Davis: Bridging Generations: Indigenous Knowledge and Language through Digital Technology

The disconnection between Elders and the younger generation in Indigenous communities, exacerbated by colonial legacies, hinders the essential transfer of cultural knowledge and language. This presentation proposes a digital solution to record Elders speaking their native tongues, facilitating an authentic intergenerational dialogue. Recognizing the sensitivity required due to historical traumas, the project emphasizes natural language use in traditional settings, promoting practice over perfection. By integrating digital technologies with cultural practices, especially those connected to the land, this initiative aims to preserve linguistic heritage while fostering innovation. It advocates for a non-judgmental, inclusive approach to ensure that every attempt at connection contributes to the communal reservoir of knowledge, supporting the continuity and revitalization of indigenous languages and traditions in a modern context.

Tom Johnson

Lisa Crowshoe

Siksikaitsitapii (Blackfoot) Elders and Knowledge Keepers share stories and historical accounts of who they are – who we are – as Niitsitapi (the First People) developing active listeners and critical thinkers. As our Indigenous communities strive to support Indigenous language revitalization activities, language workers make effort to incorporate traditional Indigenous methodologies (storytelling) with contemporary methods (podcasts) as a way to engage our people to speak our languages. This session, which combines storytelling and podcasts, explores a method for Blackfoot youth to improve their well-being while learning values-based Niitsi’powahsin (Blackfoot language). 


Half hour to network, check out exhibitors and vendors

Eugene Alexis

Richard Kistabish

Chaz Prairie Chicken: USAY

Chaz Prairie Chicken is Blackfoot and from the Siksika Nation. He began as a youth at USAY, and after graduating, he volunteered and quickly progressed to become a former Administrative Assistant, now a Coordinator. He dedicates himself to giving back to the community, being actively involved in various programs, and serving as a role model for the 2SLGBTQ+ community as a Two-Spirit individual. Chaz forges meaningful relationships within the community and embodies the spirit of connection.

Tammy Steinwand- Deschambeault

Day One Closing Remarks

Dinner and Gala

Buffet Style Dinner with Entertainment

Gala Welcome and Opening Remarks

To be Announced

Gala Entertainment: W.T. Goodspirit and the Treaty Six Band

W.T. Goodspirit by stage and Wayne Jackson in everyday life, W.T. forged a name on the Indigenous music scene in the mid-2000s with the release of the debut album, "Give Me a Sign." The album went on to be nominated for a variety of awards on the Indigenous music scene and captured a couple of awards for Best Songwriter and Best Song Single in 2007 at the Alberta Aboriginal Music Awards. 

Since the album debut, W.T. has played, emceed, and/or hosted a variety of musical events & continued to release some other original song singles, but shied away from the music spotlight in the latter 2010s. When the opportunity presented itself again in 2023, W.T. came out of hiatus to write and record his second album entitled, "nôcikiwikamikosihk," (Where the Elders Dwell), a collection of eclectic songs all in nêhiyawêwin. A second album is also in the works which will focus on children's songs in nêhiyawêwin.

W.T./Wayne also worked to form the Nehiyawe Cultural Institute to create immersion spaces within the city of Edmonton to stem the tide of language loss and to provide language learners and speakers with the opportunity to learn and hear the language, with the intent to create immersion --which is the most effective form of language acquisition--for all groups and ages of people wanting to uplift and revitalize nêhiyawêwin. It was with the mission of NCI that SILR was instrumental in supporting the creation of the language album. Proceeds from album sales & downloads will go towards NCI and with a spirited effort will be the beginning of an immersion school and language nest in the city of Edmonton.

Wayne is a language instructor and leads the Bachelor of Arts in nêhiyawêwin at University nuxełhot’įne thaaɁehots’į nistameyimâkanak Blue Quills, a sports broadcaster on radio CFWE for the Edmonton Elks games, educator, singer, songwriter, a father, son, grandfather, brother, and a husband.


Dr. Leroy Little Bear



Dr. Lorna Wanosts'a7




River Cree Resort and Casino

River Cree Resort and Casino, East Lapotac Boulevard, Enoch, AB, Canada

A memorable experience is yours to enjoy here at the River Cree Resort. Whether you’re here for business or on vacation with your family, you’ll feel right at home in our elegant hotel.

  • Air Conditioned
  • Alarm Clock
  • Bathtub
  • Cable TV
  • Coffee Maker
  • Complimentary Parking
  • Desk
  • Hair Dryer In Room
  • High Speed Internet
  • In Room Movies
  • Microwave
  • Mini Fridge
  • Radio
  • Shower
  • Telephone
  • On-Site Pool & Whirlpool
  • On-Site Fitness Centre
  • 24/7 Eats In-Room Dining Service

River Cree Resort & Casino

River Cree Resort & Casino

Guests can book hotel rooms by calling 1-844-425-2733 (24/7) OR Online Here.

Address: River Cree Resort and Casino, East Lapotac Boulevard, Enoch, AB, Canada


Photography and Videography will be recorded during the event.

By entering the SILR Gathering 2024 event, you consent to photography, audio recording, screen captures, and video recording to be used for news, promotional purposes, advertising, inclusion on websites, social media, or any other purpose by Supporting Indigenous Language Revitalization (SILR).  

Images, recordings and/or videos may be used to promote similar events in the future. You release Supporting Indigenous Language Revitalization (SILR), its officers and employees, and each and all persons involved from any liability connected with the taking, recording, digitizing, or publication and use of images, video and/or sound recordings. 

By entering the event premises, you waive all rights you may have to any claims for payment or royalties in connection with any use, of photography, audio/video recording, or any of these materials, regardless of the purpose or sponsoring of such use. You also waive any right to inspect or approve any photo, video, or audio recording taken by Supporting Indigenous Language Revitalization (SILR). You further acknowledge that Supporting Indigenous Language Revitalization (SILR) retains a worldwide, perpetual license to use such content as described. You have been fully informed of your consent, waiver of liability, and release before entering the event.

If you DO NOT want your audio and/or video recording being used, please immediately inform us at [email protected].