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Wii Chiiwaakanak Learning Centre


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Wii Chiiwaakanak Learning Centre

WII CHIIWAAKANAK MEANS “WALKING TOGETHER” IN OJIBWE. THE CENTRE IS A BRIDGE AND CONNECTION BETWEEN THE UNIVERSITY OF WINNIPEG, AND ALL IT HAS TO OFFER. WII CHIIWAAKANAK IS A COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP INITIATIVE THAT STARTED IN 2006 ENGAGING THOUSANDS OF YOUTH, FAMILIES, AND INDIVIDUALS WITHIN THE COMMUNITY EACH YEAR. 

The centre’s primary focus is on educational and cultural programs that are rooted in Indigenous language and knowledge to support community learning and engagement. Through these programs and supports the centre aims to develop and strengthen pathways for Indigenous students to University, a part of which includes partnering with local schools to facilitate STEAM programming with an Indigenous lens. The endeavors of the centre are in alignment with the University’s strategic direction of Indigenization of including and valuing Indigenous knowledge and culture throughout the campus, and bringing Indigenous perspectives into UWinnipeg.

The Wii Chiiwaakanak Learning Centre is open 5 days a week. Providing free and open access to the RBC Community Learning Commons (a computer lab with staff on-site to assist with anything from resume building and connections to other local resources), and an Indigenous-designed classroom accessible to community partners. The centre offers an after school science and homework club, women’s self-defense courses, STEAM camps in the summer and over spring break, partnership between inner-city schools to run science kids on campus programming and several after school Indigenous language and cultural programs. Each day and evening the centre sees the needs of the community and the impact that our Centre has made in improving lives. The strategic direction of the University and the impact of the centre’s programming play a contributing role to the number of Indigenous students who are enrolling at UWinnipeg, and the increased number of low-income students who are gaining access to educational programming. Indigenous students enrolled jumped from 8% of the student population in 2013 to 10% of the student population in 2017, at nearly 1000 self-declared Indigenous students.