Posted by & filed under Save the Evidence.

From the desk of Laura Palumbo, founder of Sketchy Rub Club:

Save the Evidence mohawk institute residential school restoration project

Save the Evidence mohawk institute residential school restoration project


A bit about Sketchy Run Club: we are an anti-workout run club. It started with two new moms (Rachelle and I) starting something ‘sketchy’ (i.e. semi-committal) where we would keep each other accountable for taking care of ourselves. One Hour a week dedicated completely to either running or walking, and the option of having a post-run beverage and chat, that didn’t involve being moms. We put our run out there to anyone that wanted to join, and as it turned out, lots of people that weren’t parents felt that they needed the exact same thing!  All of this to say that we didn’t intend to start a community but it just happened. We felt that we needed to establish a sense of belonging in the best way that we could, even though this was a once-a-week run, and on top of other life commitments like jobs, family, etc. 

save the evidence My first experience with Woodland Cultural Centre was through my work with Waterlution and Great Art for Great Lakes. These projects  are concerned with water both globally and locally, a key focus was learning and exploring Indigenous worldviews and relationships to water. Through this programming, I became aware of the Centre.

The first time I learned of Residential Schools was likely in high school, but the first time I understood what they were and what happened to those that attended the schools (or were affected by it because of family that attended) 

was when I worked at the CBC and Connie Walker began reporting on truth and reconciliation.  I won’t ever fully be able to understand the experience of those that attended residential schools as a settler; however, it has not stopped impacting me and the desire to speak up and support in ways that I can. 

Initially, when I spoke to Carley, I was thinking that our SRC could raise funds to support an arts-based Indigenous youth initiative. This was my comfort zone–supporting youth with access to more art. But in learning more about the Save the Evidence campaign, and connecting this to Tanya Talaga’s book  Seven Fallen Feathers and what I knew was a learning opportunity for our run club (and by extension professionals, parents, students, teachers, etc) Rachelle and I felt it would do more than simply raise money, because it would educate and inspire future generations of settlers to understand our responsibility to preserving and promoting Indigenous history, art and culture.

As a collective, we are humbled by the hard work and dedication by Woodland Cultural Centre in keeping the truth and history of Canada’s residential school system present in our hearts and minds for current and future generations to learn and understand. Our donation is dedicated to the memory of all of those who attended the Mohawk Institute.

– Laura Palumbo


Woodland Cultural Centre is grateful for community members, businesses, and organizations that have supported the Save the Evidence Campaign. As part of the Great Canadian Giving Challenge, our campaign will have the chance to win an extra $20,000 for the project. Read More about how the $20,000 would help the Save the Evidence Campaign here.

Every $1 raised in the month of June will give us one entry to win the Grand Prize.

Please help us spread the word and make a donation this month to help Save the Evidence



Posted by & filed under Save the Evidence.

First of all, a HUGE Thank you/Nya:weh to everyone that has helped us get this far in the Save the Evidence campaign. We are now into Phase 3 of the project and need the communities support to finish strong.

For the month of June, Woodland Cultural Centre is participating in the Great Canadian Giving Challenge. So every $1 raised is an entry to win the $20,000 Grand Prize.

$100 Donation gives us 100 chances to win the prize.

What will we do with the $20,000 if we win this year?


The $20,000 Grand Prize would allow us to continue our important work with Mohawk Institute Residential Survivors, ensuring their history and stories are preserved.

“History needs to be told by those that experienced it.” – Roberta Hill

Do you feel it is more valuable to hear the stories from the Survivors themselves, rather than in a book or history class?

This is something we are passionate about at Woodland Cultural Centre. We plan to use the money raised to travel throughout our support communities to collect and record stories of survivors and generational survivors. Protecting oral histories such as these is integral to what we do at the Save the Evidence campaign. The children of our future generations will be able to learn from these stories; stories told by our survivors, who as children themselves, survived such terrible and traumatic experiences.

Oral tradition has been how Indigenous People have passed on knowledge for thousands of years, and we believe it’s important that these stories be heard by all of us.

We’re asking donors to support our campaign by donating what they can, so that we can be entered for a chance to win the $20,000 grand prize. All funds raised will help us reach our goal of completing this historic and monumental project to preserve the former Mohawk Institute Indian Residential School as a “site of conscience” for all our future generations.

Thank you, for being a part of this project and doing what you can to help us accomplish this very critical work.

Watch Sherlene Bomberry’s Survivor Story Here and Help Us Record More Stories Like This:



Click Here to Read More about the Save the Evidence Campaign

Museum Jobs at Woodland Cultural Centre

Posted by & filed under Employment.

Job Title: Special Projects Assistant

Duration: Starts immediately, 9-week position, possibility of extension


The Woodland Cultural Centre is seeking an individual to assist in Community Outreach, Fundraising, and Administrative organization at the Centre. This position requires a highly motivated individual who is interested in gaining experience in community engagement, partnership development, fundraising strategy, social media marketing, and administration. This position works directly with the Outreach and Administrative Coordinators.

Job Duties:

  • Assist in all stages of fundraising endeavours, including off-site activities (if any)
  • Assist the Save the Evidence Coordinator in updating the database and expanding our community partnerships
  • Assist the Administrative Coordinator in filing, and organizing the Google Drive
  • Assist in the planning and implementation of a fundraising Social Media and Marketing strategy
  • Assist in preparations for Orange Shirt Day and our upcoming Survivors Gathering
  • Occasional front desk reception, welcoming guests as they come in and using the POS (if necessary)
  • Be familiar with the Centre’s programs and upcoming events
  • Promote a positive image of Woodland Cultural Centre to the community and the public


  • Interest in helping the Woodland Cultural Centre develop and expand community partnerships
  • Knowledge of relevant computer software (emphasis on Microsoft Office and Google Drive)
  • Good organizational skills, and willing to learn in an office environment
  • Reliable access to internet, as this position will be largely done remotely
  • Effective verbal and listening communication skills
  • Time management skills, and completion of assigned projects
  • Able to work as a team as well as independently
  • Experience working on a fundraising campaign would be considered an asset
  • A full G licence with reliable access to a vehicle would be considered an asset
  • Knowledge of one or more Indigenous Languages would be considered an asset
  • Applicants MUST be returning to full time education and be under the age of 25

All applicants for this position should submit a current CV or resume, cover letter, and two references.

Preference will be given to applicants of Indigenous ancestry.

If interested, please send cover letter and resumé with references immediately to:

Woodland Cultural Centre, 184 Mohawk Street, Brantford, ON N3S 2X2

Attn: Melissa Mt. Pleasant

(519) 759-2650

Only those selected for an interview will be contacted


Download Full Job Description Here

Posted by & filed under Save the Evidence.

Save the Evidence Campaign Announces the Great Canadian Giving Challenge in June


(Brantford/Six Nations, ON) – Woodland Cultural Centre hopes to spark the season of giving during June with the Great Canadian Giving Challenge.  Woodland Cultural Centre is a charity organization that is dedicated to our mission to inform, educate, and promote Indigenous culture, history, language and arts.  The “Save the Evidence” campaign is an initiative launched by WCC to restore the Mohawk Institute Residential School, one of the last residential schools standing in Canada. In the month of June, every dollar raised has a chance to make a big impact on the project. 


Charities across Canada are facing fundraising shortfalls and a number of operational challenges due to COVID-19 and the associated social distancing – many charities are in danger of closing their doors. To help charities like us survive and push forward with our essential projects, CanadaHelps has launched the sixth annual Great Canadian Giving Challenge with an increased grand prize.


What is The Great Canadian Giving Challenge?

It is a National public contest to benefit any registered Canadian charity. Every $1 donated to a registered charity in June via, automatically enters the charity to win an additional $20,000 donation. The grand prize draw will take place on July 1st, Canada Day, and one lucky charity will receive this new grand prize of $20,000. CanadaHelps knows that the charitable sector has been hit hard by COVID-19, and has doubled the prize this year! 


This year we’re asking donors to support our campaign to Save the Evidence of the Mohawk Institute Residential School. Your contribution would allow us to continue working towards the completion of the Save the Evidence restoration project as well as continuing our important work with Mohawk Institute Residential School Survivors, ensuring each survivor’s history and stories are preserved.


We plan to use the money raised to travel throughout our support communities to collect and record stories of survivors and generational survivors. Protecting oral histories such as these is integral to what we do at the Save the Evidence campaign. The children of our future generations will be able to learn from these stories; stories told by our survivors, who as children themselves, survived such terrible and traumatic experiences.


The total budget for the restoration of the Mohawk Institute Residential School Building is $23.5 million. With your assistance and support we will be able to build upon the success we have achieved in fundraising $12  million with renovations of Phase One  complete. We are so grateful for the incredible support we have seen thus far. We are currently awaiting response to funding for $11 million. If this funding is successful, we will need to raise the remaining $500,000  to complete the final phase of Save the Evidence. 


We’re asking donors to support our campaign by donating what they can, so that we can be entered for a chance to win the $20,000 grand prize. All funds raised will help us reach our goal of completing this historic and monumental project to preserve the former Mohawk Institute Indian Residential School as a “site of conscience” for all our future generations.


Now, more than ever, our community needs us. And we need you.. Just $100 gives Woodland Cultural Centre 100 chances to win that $20,000.


We appreciate the community’s support in helping us spread awareness about this initiative. On June 1st, simply click the button below and make a donation!


Posted by & filed under Uncategorised.

Museum Jobs at Woodland Cultural CentreDescription:

The Woodland Culture Centre offers an opportunity for an individual to assist in various administrative and research initiatives. This position requires a highly motivated youth (age 15-29) who works well independently, has a research and/or administrative background, and is interested in conducting research and drafting reports in the areas of contemporary Indigenous arts, history, and market research for museums and historical sites. This is an off-site position – applicants must have reliable access to a computer and internet.


Job Duties:

  • General administrative duties as required
  • Market research for visual and performing arts, museum, fundraising, etc.
  • Research into local history
  • Report writing in a variety of areas
  • Copy editing, proofing, and formatting
  • Investigations into best practices
  • Other duties and research projects as assigned



  • Oral and written communication skills
  • Demonstrated research skills 
  • Interest in the arts administration, museum studies, heritage, culture, tourism and/or education
  • Self-motivated, highly independent, and organizational skills a must 
  • University degree in a related field preferred
  • Must have reliable access to a computer and internet
  • Knowledge of a Haudenosaunee language an asset


Physical Requirements:

The Administrative Research Assistant position will be heavy in office work.


Applicants must qualify for the Canada Summer Jobs program to be qualified for the position. Only those applicants selected for an interview will be contacted. Preference will be given to Indigenous applicants


Applicants shall email a cover letter, resume, and two references by 4 pm Monday June 8th, 2020 to: 

Woodland Cultural Centre 

184 Mohawk Street, Brantford ON N3S 2X2

519 759-2650 


Download Full Job Description Here

Posted by & filed under Employment.

Museum Jobs at Woodland Cultural CentreRequest for Proposals: Terms of Reference


Strategic Planning for the Woodland Cultural Centre

Location: Woodland Cultural Centre, Brantford ON

Application Deadline: May 29, 2020 at 4 PM




The Woodland Cultural Centre is a First Nations educational and cultural centre. It was established in 1972 to protect, promote, interpret, and present the history, language, intellect and cultural heritage of the Anishinaabe and Ongwehon:weh. This mandate is from our member Nations; Wahta Mohawks, Six Nations of the Grand River, and the Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte.

Further, the Mohawk Institute Residential School, as part of the Woodland Cultural Centre, is one of only a handful of Residential Schools left still standing in Canada. Through the Save the Evidence fundraising campaign, the impact of this site will service the professional arts and cultural heritage sector, along with the 15,000 visitors the site sees each year.

With this major site transformation, it is time to re-examine the Woodland Cultural Centre missions, mandate, goals/objectives and priorities through a five-year visioning lens.

Our intention is to draft a Five-Year Strategic Plan which clearly maps a path into the future for the major assets of the Centre.

Objectives of the Consultancy:


The objective of this consultancy is to manage the process of creating an effective strategic plan to guide the vision and strategic priorities of the Woodland Cultural Centre.


Tasks and Duties of the Consultant:


Under the guidance of the Board of Directors and Executive Director:

  1. Review thoroughly the history, vision, mission, mandate and recent work of the Woodland Cultural Centre to date, including meetings with relevant staff/board members, and all documents and marketing materials produced to date.
  2. Through an exercise of soliciting input from stakeholders including through individual and board meetings, leading focus groups, and facilitating a SWOT analysis, identifying priorities, gaps, needs, and actions for the Woodland Cultural Centre to meet its mission, mandate and goals. 
  3. Prepare a strategy based on the information collected, including specific approaches, indicators, and evaluation.
  4. Present the draft strategy in a board meeting to solicit input and feedback to improve the strategy, including key strategic objectives, and high-level indicators for success.
  5. Based on the input and consultation from this meeting, prepare a revised and final copy of the 5 Year Strategic Plan, including financial projections for 2020-2025.


The consultancy work will include the following specific tasks:


  • Consulting meetings with Executive Director, Board of Directors, and Staff
  • Hold SWOT meetings with appointed committees
  • Hold consultation sessions with support communities
  • Meet with any Woodland Cultural Centre committees, such as the Save the Evidence Advisory Committee
  • Organization of the consultation workshop with board members
  • Organization of the final validation meeting and endorsement of the final strategic plan
  • Review, discuss and complete the final report ready for approval and distribution. 


Tangible and Measurable Deliverables of the Work Assignment:


Performing the above-mentioned activities, the consultant will be responsible for the delivery of the following outputs. The consultant must provide a digital copy for all reports to be presented to the Board.

  • Formalize a work plan for the work to be undertaken, including timelines
  • Interim report presented to the Board summarizing:
    • The results and status of the work accomplished to date, and the problem areas that need to be addressed.
    • A detailed summary of the process through which the goals were organized into short- and long-term goals, how the goals were prioritized, and a 5-year draft action plan.
    • Identifies human and financial resources to carry out the plan.
    • Updated timeline and work plan for remainder of the contract
  • Final Report of the 5-year Strategic Plan agreed upon in the final validation meeting. 


Supervision of the work:


The consultant will work under the direct and overall supervision of the Executive Director and Board of Directors. 


Roles & Responsibilities


The WCC Board is responsible to:

  • Approve and award the contract
  • Be available to meet with the facilitator/consultant
  • Review and discuss and as necessary direct revisions to the draft Report(s)
  • Signify approval of the Final Report via a Board Motion


Proposal Structure


The applicants shall provide a digital copy of their proposal that shall include the following details:

  • Background and experience in working with First Nations communities/organizations in the area of Strategic Planning
  • Client References including contact information.
  • Project Methodology (include detailed work plan).
  • Proposed Report Framework (components).
  • Proposed Timeframe for Project (express in terms of consecutive weeks required from the time the contract is awarded).
  • Total Project Cost (including detailed outline of fees and disbursements as per work plan (e.g. be sure to include proposed number and type of meetings and cost per meetings)
  • Proposed payment schedule (The consultant shall not be paid more than 90% of the agreed fees and disbursements until the Final Report has been reviewed and approved by the Board.)


Proposal Selection:


The WCC Board may award a contract based on the criteria laid out below: 

  • Experience with First Nations and satisfactory performance on similar projects
  • Proposed Schedule for Project  
  • Project Methodology
  • Schedule of Fees and Total Estimated Project Cost
  • Presentation
  • References
  • Priority will be given to applicants of Indigenous heritage


Consultancy Requirements:


  • Minimum of 5-10 years of experience working with First Nation communities/organizations in the areas of strategic planning.
  • Experience of working with non-profit and charitable organizations 
  • Proven excellent communication and facilitation skills
  • Highly motivated and committed to the values of transparency and integrity
  • Knowledge of Indigenous culture and Residential Schools is an advantage.


Copyright and Project Documents:


The information, both written and intellectual, produced in this project is considered to be the property of the WCC, and the Consultant shall not use any documents or information that result from this project without the written permission of the WCC. Further the Consultant shall treat all information that results from this study, both written and verbal, in strict confidence.


Privilege Clauses:


The WCC may at its sole discretion, reject or retain for its consideration proposals which are non-conforming because they do not contain the content or form required.


Notwithstanding any other provision in the Request for Proposals or practice or custom in the industry, the WCC Board shall have the right to:

  • Accept any Proposal
  • Reject any Proposal
  • Reject all Proposals
  • Accept a Proposal which is not the lowest bid


Any person who submits a Proposal shall be deemed to have agreed to the restrictions in the Request for Proposal documents, including the privilege clauses.


Interested candidates should send their complete proposal with CV and three references
by May 29 at 4 PM to:


Executive Director

Woodland Cultural Centre

184 Mohawk Street

Brantford, ON N3S 2X2


(519) 759-2650


Download full Job Description PDF here

Posted by & filed under Art, Employment, News.

Brantford / Six Nations (Ontario) – May 5, 2020: The Woodland Cultural Centre is pleased to announce the appointment of Janis Monture as the Executive Director.

Janis Monture brings extensive professional expertise and cultural experience  to Woodland Cultural Centre at a critical time in its history. Janis is from Six Nations of the Grand River, Mohawk Nation Turtle Clan.  Janis was most recently the Director of Tourism and Cultural Initiatives for the Six of the Grand River Development Corporation where she accomplished significant growth and awareness related to the rich tourism assets in the region. Janis served as Executive Director of the Woodland Cultural Centre from 2003-2017  In her capacity at the Centre, Janis was a steering committee member for the Great Lakes Research Alliance for the Study of Aboriginal Arts and Cultures and a committee member for the Arts & Culture Advisory Council for the Toronto 2015 Pan Am/Para Pan American Games.  During her tenure, Janis accomplished many critical partnerships with institutions large and small such as the National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian, the Royal Ontario Museum, and Chiefswood National Historic Site.  Janis was instrumental in undertaking the consultation process that has led to the restoration of the Mohawk Institute Residential School site.

As a result of Janis’ leadership and expertise, she was asked to undertake a secondment to Harbourfront Centre as the Guest Artistic Director of Planet IndigenUS in 2009 and 2015.  These international, multidisciplinary, Indigenous festivals brought great awareness to Indigenous contemporary artists globally and explored important ideas and issues impacting Indigenous communities world-wide.  

Janis attended the University of Western Ontario where she obtained a Bachelor of Arts in History, followed by a Museum Studies diploma from Algonquin College.  Janis continues to volunteer in her community at Six Nations and in Brantford with various organizations. She is a current Board Member of Brant Community Foundation, and the current President of the Kaha:wi Dance Theatre.

Her passion and vision for preserving and promoting Indigenous culture is infectious, and her exceptional leadership skills are going to be a vital asset to the growth of the Woodland Cultural Centre as it reaches its 50th anniversary.


“I’m excited to be back at Woodland Cultural Centre as we embark on some exciting new initiatives.  Despite our current climate, it is increasingly important that Woodland Cultural Centre continues to serve our support communities, artists, and patrons at this time.  I look forward to welcoming back our audiences once it is safe to do so.  It is a great honour to be back..” – Janis Monture



Media Contact:
Layla Black
Marketing Coordinator
184 Mohawk St. Brantford ON
519-759-2650 x 250 

Posted by & filed under corn husk dolls, Exhibits, News, Online Activities, Workshops.

Corn was more than just a side dish to the Haudenosaunee people. Every single part of the corn was used in some way, the husks were braided and woven into baskets and dolls, the kernels were the main source of calcium in their diet, and the stalk itself was the protector for the beans that grew.

Recently our staff put together a 56 Minute Workshop to guide the community through creating a Beaded CornCob Keychain. Not only did they make beautiful beaded keychains, but participants also got to learn about the significance of Corn to the Haudenosaunee people. It wasn’t just food, it was an entity of its own.

Do you want to check out the Workshop Replay?

Click the link to have the recording sent directly to your inbox!



Corn was seen as one of the Three Sisters, and was planted together with Beans and Squash. These three plants worked together

to support each other. The Corn provided a long stalk for the Beans to climb, the Beans supplied nitrogen to the ground, and the Squash would keep the ground covered and protected from weeds.

Watch the video below to learn more about the story of the Three Sisters.

Learn more about the process of lyed corn from Chezney Martin and how this ancient technique of lyed corn would alkaline the body and protect the Haudenosaunee from disease.

Cornhusks were also used to make baskets, hats, and faceless dolls. The dolls were said to be faceless to remind the people not to be vain or self absorbed with their looks and beauty.  The photograph to the right is taken from the “Art of Cornhusk” Exhibition and created by Elizabeth Doxtator, owner of “Everything Cornhusk”

Press Play on the Video Below to get an in-home lesson on the Significance of Corn to the Haudenosaunee people. 


Do you want access to the Beaded CornCob Keychain Workshop? Click the Button Below, Enter your Email, and the Replay will be sent to your Email!

Posted by & filed under News, Online Activities, Save the Evidence.

Woodland Cultural Centre releases Save the Evidence Newsletter Digitally to update the Community.

The Save the Evidence campaign is an initiative launched by the Woodland Cultural Centre to raise awareness and support for the restoration of the former Mohawk Institute Residential School building. The vision is to turn the building into an Interpretive Historic Site and Educational Resource. The Mohawk Institute building itself is only one of a handful of Residential School buildings left standing in Canada, and the only one in Ontario that offered guided tours until its closure for repairs.

Even with our doors closed to the public, our fundraising efforts must continue as the project still pushes forward to be completed.

In the newest edition of our Save the Evidence Newsletter, we wanted to bring you inspiring stories from community members and sponsors to bring some positivity into your newsfeed.

Want to Read the Save the Evidence Newsletter Online?


  • Click the Download Button and Join our Email Family and enter your best email, or click HERE NOW.
  • Check your Inbox for our Email and mark all emails from Woodland Cultural Centre as “safe” so you don’t miss future communication.
  • Hit REPLY to any emails we send to reach out directly to our Team!


What’s inside this recent edition?


We are very grateful for the community supporters who reached out to offer their positive messages and stories. Not only will you get updates about construction and fundraising inside the newsletter, but also a personally written story from a small little Run Club who made a big impact with the Save the Evidence project.

This newsletter shows the incredible partnership of both corporate business sponsors, municipalities, and also individuals who have all come together to support this project.


Want to learn more about the Save the Evidence Campaign and learn how you can make a donation?

Wondering where your Donations will go?

Click Here and READ MORE about the Save the Evidence Campaign and make an online donation here.

Posted by & filed under Art, Events, Online Activities, Workshops.

“Woodland Cultural Centre serves to preserve and promote Indigenous history, art, language and culture. We welcome you to visit and learn with us as we bring the story of the Haudenosaunee people of the Eastern Woodlands to life through innovative exhibitions and programs.”


Even though our facility is closed, our staff is still passionate about fulfilling our mandate above.

The Corncob Keychain Workshop is one of our most popular Educational Craft Workshops that are offered to groups, schools and organizations when they tour our museum. It’s recommended for Grade 7 and up because of the sharp needle, but with an adult present we hope that many will be able to join us.

We hope to bring more Educational Workshops to you through our Zoom Classroom.

Make sure to JOIN OUR EMAIL LIST so you stay in the loop.

We are currently all out of Craft Kits for this project, but were glad we could distribute the ones we had on hand. If you plan to attend, you will need to source the supplies for yourself.


  • 1 string of Sinew
  • 1 leather corncob steam (roll and glue)
  • 1 leather tie
  • 1 leather needle (other needles will work if able to pierce leather)
  • Coloured beads
  •  Metal keychain loop



The workshop is schedule live for April 9th at 12PM EST in a Zoom Classroom.

Even if you are unable to attend live, all who register will be sent out the recording of the workshop to watch at a later date.


REGISTER for the Corncob Workshop Here