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Spirit Bear and Children Make History

Maple Leaf This item is only available for Canadian orders.

Catalogue Number:  FNC005
Producer:  First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada
Producing Agencies:  First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada
Subject:  Canadian History, Canadian Social Issues, Canadian Social Studies, Citizenship Education, Criminal Justice & Law, Current Events, First Nations Studies, Guidance, Health, History, Indigenous Issues, Indigenous Peoples, Social Issues, Social Sciences, Social Studies
Language:  English
Grade Level:  3 - 5, 6 - 8, 9 - 12
Country Of Origin:  Canada
Copyright Year:  2020
Running Time:  26:28

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Spirit Bear and Children Make History tells the true story about how Spirit Bear and his friends stood up for First Nations children and helped make Jordan’s Principle a reality. When Spirit Bear’s mom tells him about an important human rights case happening in Ottawa, Ontario, he makes the LONG trip (by train, his favourite way to travel) to go and watch, and to stand up for First Nations kids. And he isn’t the only one! Lots of children come too—to listen, and to show they care. Spirit Bear knows that children can change the world because he’s there to see it happen. This is the story of how kids—kids just like you—made a difference… with a bit of help from some bears and other animals along the way!

  • What is Jordan’s Principle? - Jordan’s Principle is a legal rule in Canada. It helps ensure First Nations children and youth can access the public services (health, education, early childhood services) they need, when they need them, and without prejudice. 
  • Who is Jordan River Anderson? - Jordan River Anderson was from Norway House Cree Nation. He was born in Manitoba in 1999 with multiple medical challenges. He spent his entire life in the hospital, despite clearance to live at home with proper care. Unfortunately, the federal and provincial governments couldn’t decide on who should pay for that care. (Depending on whether they live on or off reserve, different levels of government support certain services for First Nations children and youth.) Jordan died at the age of five without ever going home or living outside of the hospital. He waited over two years in hospital for the funding dispute to be resolved. His story is what inspired Jordan’s Principle. 
  • Who is Spirit Bear? - Child welfare advocate Cindy Blackstock’s critically-acclaimed Spirit Bear book has now been made into a beautifully animated film. It’s purpose is to explain human rights to youngsters in Grades 2 to 6 and help educate and create change. Spirit Bear, a fuzzy little stuffed animal has kept Cindy company at each and every human rights tribunal she has attended. Spirit Bear was presented to Cindy by the Carrier Sekani Tribal Council in British Columbia. Although the book and film are geared toward children, Cindy’s book was widely used by university students and professors in law, justice and reconciliation courses.

From Child Rights Activist Dr. Cindy Blackstock, and Michif filmmaker and animator Amanda Strong.

NOTE: This animated video has been produced for young children however has been used in Post-Secondary courses on Indigenous Rights and the Law in Canada due to its focus on Children’s Rights.

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