It’s now less than a week before we fly, but the project has already taken off in ways we’d only dreamed of. Our small impromptu fundraiser at Ixiim Toronto last weekend raised money, awareness, and yielded new friends and supporters. On Thursday the GoFundMe campaign was trending. On Wednesday we were contacted by Anishinabek News, who scheduled an interview to take place at the end of the week. Friday, with the immeasurable help of Jordi Small at Long & McQuade Music—who crunched the numbers and bent some rules—we saw a pallet of guitars, a bass, two small amps, and 10 ukuleles donated by our friends Certifiably Strung, shipped off to Timmins, where De Beers Canada will pick them up and fly them to our destination free of charge. To say we’re grateful is an understatement! Our fundraising campaign remains open until we reach our goal, which is still needed to cover the cost of the brand new instruments that will stay in Attawapiskat to enrich the lives of the youth group we’ll visit.
We now have the time we need to focus on the program: a week-long listening/playing/song-writing crash course with the goal of producing a bi-lingual song (English and Cree) and a video inspired by a rich legacy of indigenous music, dedicated to the land, the people, and the indomitable spirit that binds them together.