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Where We Come From

In the early 90's, at the Annual General Meeting of Grand Council of the Crees of Eeyou Istchee and the Cree Regional Authority which was held in Whapmagoostui; the Regional Director who advocated for Women’s rights, Mrs. Bella Mianscum, requested a resolution to be passed to recognize the Cree Women in Eeyou Istchee which received unanimous support from all Chiefs in assembly. After this, no further action was taken as to requiring funding or other support needed to bring forth the Cree Women. So they continued to associate through the Quebec Native Women with the little funding allocated to each Quebec nation/tribe. There was no continuation of the business affairs regarding Cree Women except at the Annual Gatherings and usually these gatherings were held around the end of summer and at this time most women were out on their goose/moose breaks.

The process in developing our Mission Statement and logo took many years. However, just recently the former Board of Directors of the newly incorporated CWEIA came up with a revised Mission and Vision Statements, as well as values as an organization. Our former President Mrs. Doris A. Bobbish, who was the former Quebec Native Women’s Association Nation’s Director was elected in 2007 and this is when we, as the Cree Women of Eeyou Istchee, started networking to seek funding. At this time, this was the turning point for CWEIA; various government agencies and the CRA approached us. This was seen as support for us to apply for certain funding through various initiatives at the regional and provincial levels.

In 2008, contact was finally made with the Ministry of Culture, Communications and Status of Women of Quebec (MCCCFQ) at the Quebec Government to sign an agreement to provide us with funding to build on our capacity as well as develop programs and services through five objectives that was developed with the CWEIA in collaboration with the MCCCFQ program officer.

Then in 2009, the GCC/CRA Executive Board passed a resolution to accept the Agreement and also took the bold move to provide funding to the CWEIA to allow us to develop as an organization. In January of 2009, we signed and became an Association under the provincial government and at that same time signed a service agreement with the CRA and an agreement with the MCCCFQ.

Last but not least, CWEIA has entered into a four-year agreement with MCCCFQ, the 2011-2015 Agreement on Equality between women and men in Northern Quebec region, which will allow for continuity and time to carry out the objectives within the Strategic Plan of our Association.