The Puamun Meshkenu organization, founded and chaired by Dr. Stanley Vollant, launches the Mamu Nikantetau “Let us move together towards reconciliation” Grand March. The walkers will cover Nitassinan more than 300 km in 8 days. The departure will take place on Saturday in Pessamit and the arrival during the National Day of Truth and Reconciliation on September 30 in Maliotenam.
This symbolic 300-kilometer walk through Innu ancestral territory will take a route located between the forests of the North Coast and the coast of the St. Lawrence River. Mamu Nikantetau aims to be a call to unity and mobilization, both individual and collective.
Stanley Vollant, Quebec’s first Indigenous surgeon, recently accepted the position of Director of Public Health for the Quebec and Labrador First Nations Health and Social Services Commission. However, Dr. Vollant does not intend to neglect his involvement with young people.
He created the Puamun Meshkunu Foundation, which organized a 275 km walk to meet Pope Francis and residential school survivors in July 2022. He started the great Innu Meshkenu march 12 years ago, which regularly took him to Nitassinan des Innu to become young and old alike moving.
Stanley Vollant has walked more than 7,000 kilometers since 2010 among indigenous communities in Quebec and Labrador to promote healthy lifestyles and encourage school perseverance.
Mamu Nikantetau 2023
Their new initiative offers an opportunity to reflect on how far we have come and the impact of such an event on the collective healing process. The Mamu Nikantetau 2023 march shares the same fundamental objectives. Its goal is to continue constructive dialogue between indigenous and non-indigenous peoples, raise awareness about the history and challenges faced by indigenous peoples, and promote healing and reconciliation.
A group of 15 walkers will travel the 300 km. Other walkers will join the group to cover some sections, particularly during the last 15km segment between Uashat and Maliotenam, where everyone is invited to walk with them. Dr. Stanley Vollant, who will be present at the start and finish, expresses his deep hope for the impact of this collective approach.
“The road to reconciliation is a long road. A journey in which we must commit ourselves, both to heal the wounds of the past, and to think together about the future we want for our Nations.