Ontario

Grades 10-12 Lesson 3: The Tale of Grassy Narrows

Grades 10-12 Lesson 3: The Tale of Grassy Narrows

“It’s been a devastation of a whole way of life, a whole… culture that we need to rebuild.” – Judy Da Silva, Environmental Health Coordinator for Grassy Narrows
Grassy Narrows is a remote Northwestern Ontario reserve with approximately 1000 residents. Its water supply has been contaminated by mercury for over 50 years. Due to inadequate treatment of surface water and uranium-contaminated well water, there are currently four boil water advisories at Grassy Narrows. The contamination has already had a long-term public health impact on-reserve.

Grades 10-12 Lesson 4: The Tale of Shoal Lake 40

Grades 10-12 Lesson 4: The Tale of Shoal Lake 40

“It’s on the Manitoba-Ontario border, there are two First Nations involved, [the community] is not isolated, just south of the Trans-Canada Highway, it’s complex just getting there geographically, and incredibly complex getting there politically.” – Cuyler Cotton, Co-ordinator for both the Water Servicing and All Weather Road Projects
A century ago, the federal government expropriated land inhabited by the Shoal Lake 40 First Nation for construction of an aqueduct to provide water to the city of Winnipeg. Band members were moved onto a man-made island. Shoal Lake 40 has been under a boil water advisory since February 18, 1997.

Grades 10-12 Lesson 6: The Tale of Neskantaga

Grades 10-12 Lesson 6: The Tale of Neskantaga

“For more than 20 years we haven’t been able to drink water from our taps or bathe without getting rashes. Water is a basic human right, and it should not have taken this long to provide the people of Neskantaga with access to safe drinking water.” – Neskantaga Chief Wayne Moonias
Neskantaga First Nation in Northern Ontario has the longest-standing drinking water advisory of any First Nation in Canada. Two decades ago, their water-treatment plant (which was then only a couple of years old) broke down – never to run again, and this means that the water could be contaminated with any number of bugs that pose threats to human health. This affects the daily lives of the over 340 residents of this First Nation.

Grades 3-5 Lesson 4: Water Is Important

Grades 3-5 Lesson 4: Water Is Important

“No child should grow up not knowing what clean water is, or never knowing what running water is.” – Autumn Peltier
The percentage of the human body that is water ranges from 50% to 75%. The average adult is 50% to 65% water. Infants are approximately 75% water. The percentage of the human body that is water declines with age. We need to replenish our body with safe drinking water. Sometimes there are contaminants in the water and that causes a Boil Water Advisory to be called. Sometimes the contaminants cannot be removed through boiling and, therefore, a Do Not Use Advisory is issued instead. Neskantaga First Nation in Ontario has been under a Boil Water Advisory for over 23 years!

Operation Water Spirit Curriculum Connections

Operation Water Spirit Curriculum Connections

Alberta Grade Five English Language Arts 1.1: Discover and Explore - Express ideas and develop understanding, 1.2: Clarify and Extend - Consider others' ideas - Combine ideas - Extend understanding, 2.2: Respond to Texts - Construct meaning from text - Appreciate the artistry of texts