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Helen Betty Osborne Memorial Awards

The Helen Betty Osborne Memorial Fund recognizes Indigenous students who are making a difference in eliminating the barriers of racism, sexism, violence, and indifference in society. The scholarship fund was established to honour her memory and provide financial support to Indigenous students. The fund is one of hundreds of scholarship funds managed by The  Winnipeg Foundation.

Originally from Norway House Cree Nation, Helen Betty Osborne had a dream to one day become a teacher. Helen attended Manitoba Brethren Collegiate Institute and was on the home placement program administered by Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada. She also spent two years at Guy Hill Residential School (1926-1979) on the shore of Clearwater Lake just outside The Pas, Manitoba. Helen was 19 years old when she was abducted and brutally murdered in 1971. It took 16 years for anyone to be charged with her murder with only one of four attackers convicted of the crime in 1987.

Thank you to everyone who applied to the memorial fund. 176 applications were received and reviewed by a selection committee that included representatives from the Indigenous Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation (NCTR). The awards were available to Indigenous persons who reside in and are enrolled in post-secondary studies in Manitoba.Thirty, $2,500 awards were disbursed from the Helen Betty Osborne Memorial Fund to Indigenous students. 

Many of the selected applicants highlighted wanting to return to their home communities upon completion of their education as a way to give back. Other educational paths included health care, social work, education, law, and addressing the legacy of missing and murdered women and girls. Recipients for the award also included single parents and LGBTQ2S+ individuals.

Applicants shared their enrolment in post-secondary, a resume and essay outlining educational and career goals, community involvement and what Helen Betty Osborne’s life and legacy means to them.

Recipients

Marilyn Butler
Brandi Cable
Charisma Castel
Sarah DeLaronde
Brighton Desjarlais
Danielle Desjarlais
Floyd Duclos
Nicole Fontaine
Jayelle Friesen-Enns
Dakota Harper
Sandra Hart
Chelsey Hill
Darlene Keeper
Justin Langan
Brittany Laplante
Jenna McKay
Marsha Moneyas
Davilene Monias
Virginia Nataweyous
Natalie Ogryzlo
Janelle Poirion
Shayleen Ponace
Ashley Prince
Raven Richards
Kylee Sinclair
Mallory Sinclair
Patti Lynne Sinclair
Rayel Smoke
John St. Pierre
Kiana Tait

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NCTR’s spirit name – bezhig miigwan, meaning “one feather”.

Bezhig miigwan calls upon us to see each Survivor coming to the NCTR as a single eagle feather and to show those Survivors the same respect and attention an eagle feather deserves. It also teaches we are all in this together — we are all one, connected, and it is vital to work together to achieve reconciliation.