About the Pakitinâsowin Reciprocity Fund
The Pakitinâsowin Reciprocity Fund is held by The King's University on behalf of the Northern Alberta Diaconal Conference (NADC), local church partners, and King's wider community. The fund expresses a vision for reconciliation by Christian church communities in Edmonton and central Alberta. We encourage churches across the confessional spectrum are encouraged to give to this fund.
Why Support the Pakitinâsowin Reciprocity Fund?
Because the Pakitinâsowin Reciprocity Fund is unique:
The Pakitinâsowin Reciprocity Fund is a unique expression of reconciliation and relationship between churches and Indigenous communities. While many church-based reconciliation initiatives either focus on educating the church about its past or predetermining the sorts of Indigenous initiatives they will support, the Pakitinâsowin Reciprocity Fund will start with relationships of trust with Indigenous partners, who know best what is needed in their communities.
Church partners and faith communities donate to the fund, drawing on their resources to support the good work being done in and by their Indigenous neighbours. The fund itself is held by King’s, who stewards donors’ gifts so that the fund, and its impact, can grow. Our local Indigenous-led advisory council– consisting of Indigenous leaders from various communities– is responsible for decisions related to the dispersal of funds, including encouraging and soliciting applications, reviewing applications, and determining successful applicants. The advisory circle will normally disperse three grants per year: one to an Indigenous-led children’s initiative; one to an Indigenous-led women’s initiative; one to an Indigenous-led community initiative.
Because the Pakitinâsowin Reciprocity Fund is an opportunity to help makes things right, together:
It is critical that the call for reparations, reconciliation, and mutual restoration be undertaken by churches together. Although every church has its own history of how it came to Canada and related to Indigenous peoples, all churches can become more mindful of the ways in which their divisions and historic approaches to mission contain aspects of a colonial mentality. Partnering with an Indigenous-led advisory circle and supporting Indigenous-led initiatives through an accessible, low-barrier fund ensures that funds and lands returned to the use of Indigenous partners can be utilized in more substantial and sustainable ways. Walking together expands the healing that can be accomplished in all directions.
What sorts of initiatives might the fund support?
- Grassroots cultural education and language revival programs
- Maternal health and support programs for young mothers
- Community literacy programs for children and elders
- Peer-to-peer mentoring programs for those transitioning from the justice system
- Elder-led culture camps for Indigenous youth
- Small business incubators and training for Indigenous entrepreneurs
- Access to trauma-informed, culturally appropriate counselling and mental health supports
Together, we are committed to growing the fund as an expression of our commitment to reconciliation and desire to make reparations for the harms perpetuated by Christian communities against Indigenous peoples. We all know that there is much for Christian communities to lament. This fund is one small step toward righting broken relationships and so acknowledging our common Creator’s hope for all God’s image-bearers to flourish.