Youth from Marten Falls First Nation were the recipients of the best overall video award for the Ontario Mining Association’s 2013 So You Think You Know Mining video contest this past June.
The winning youth from Marten Falls were: Christian Peters, Matthew Waboose, Allen Waboose, Jared Peters, Drew Waboose, Craig and Skye Achneepineskum. The filmmakers travelled to Toronto to attend a ceremony at the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) that recognized the winning contestants.
“Visiting Toronto was awesome, I got to meet new people and visit the CN tower,” said Drew Waboose, one of the recipients of the mining video award of $5,000 and a trophy. “My mom was so proud when she found out we won first place. Hearing my group’s name get called I felt happy because we never thought we were going to win.”
Allen Waboose, another one of the filmmakers, said some of the challenges during production were getting a boat to use for the film and climbing on top of the community arena to get a good shot of a helicopter flying in supplies. “It started off with Kaitlyn Ferris (of Noront Resources), it wasn’t all my idea,” said Allen Waboose. “She came to my reserve and I just randomly joined the project.”
Ferris, Noront’s corporate responsibility manager, was very excited to attend the award ceremony with the youth.
She said they flew in the day before the ceremony, and were fitted for and given suits and dresses for the show.
“When we got to the awards, everyone had their shades on, and they all looked like movie stars and directors,” said Ferris. They arrived at the ROM and met a number of people in the mining industry, among others.
“There was about 15 different categories, and the youth from Marten Falls knew they had won one, but they didn’t know which one.”
Slowly, as the night went on, the judges were crossing off the different categories and got closer to the final best overall category, the youth were getting more excited.
Ferris said they were called up to receive the $5,000 award and a trophy – they all gave an acceptance speech.
“We knew we had the potential to achieve above what everyone else’s expectation of us was,” the acceptance speech reads. “From our local community a small group came together and we felt motivated to work as a team. As we came up with our own story, began filming, recording narration, and editing our film it made us more determined to succeed.”
The youth who won the award were part of a mining movie youth camp, set up through a partnership between the Ontario Mining Association (OMA), DAREarts and Engage Learn.
Ferris said they were looking to do something more creative to reach the youth and educate them about mining and what was happening with the Ring of Fire region.
“I think the importance of the camp was giving the youth a chance to tell their community’s story to us,” said Ferris, adding that in any industry, it is sometimes a practice to go into a community and talk, but not listen.
What resulted was a trip to the mining office in Marten Falls and a visit to an Elder in the community to learn more about the history of Marten Falls and the surrounding area.
Lesley Hymers, the environment and education specialist for OMA, said that they have only recently started getting video contest submissions in recent years since the contest began in 2009.
“Videos become property of the OMA, that means is we host them on our website, so any of the winning videos will be there for people to watch at any time,” said Hymers.
Hymers said the videos are used for educational purposes.