Janelle Pewapsconias is a nehiyaw iskwesis (Plains Cree woman) from Little Pine First Nation, Treaty 6 territory. Janelle is a mother, volunteer and an advocate for environmental and social justice. She walks with “two eyes open”, meaning she always carries her traditional worldviews and values as she journeys through life in Saskatoon.
Janelle’s aim is to create a better living for Indigenous women and children, and for the planet. She works to create better relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people on Turtle Island. She currently works at the University of Saskatchewan at the Aboriginal Students’ Centre. In her role she was able to create an Indigenous and non-Indigenous cultural relationship building program called Building Bridges, in partnership with the International Student and Study Abroad Centre.
In 2015, Janelle facilitated the Next Up: First Nations & Metis Youth in Action intensive program after participating in the 2014 program. She hopes to not only help strong young Indigenous people gain more skills and knowledge about social, environmental and cultural inequality, but also hopes to learn more about training young people and using tools to better build herself.