Lorna Wánosts’a7 Williams
Lorna Wánosts’a7 Williams is Lil̓wat7ul, from Mount Currie, British Columbia. She is an Indigenous educator and language specialist. Being a survivor of federal day schools and residential schools, Wánosts’a7 has experienced the intergenerational impacts that these institutions have had on Indigenous communities and has dedicated her life to promoting and restoring Indigenous culture and language.
After the federal government relinquished control of on-reserve education in 1973, Wanosts’a7 played a key role in developing the curriculum for the band-controlled Ts̓zil Community School in Mount Currie which integrated traditional knowledge, language, and values. She was instrumental in developing the writing system for the Líl̓wat language, including curriculum and learning resources which have seen continued use for decades.
Wanosts’a7 has served as the First Nations Education Specialist for the Vancouver School Board; the Director of the Aboriginal Education Enhancements Branch of the Ministry of Education; and has helped found a number of institutes, including the Variety Learning Centre and the Sa’li’shan Institute. At the University of Victoria, she is Associate Professor Emeritus of Indigenous Education, Curriculum and Instruction; and has served as Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Knowledge and Learning.
Lorna Wánosts’a7 Williams has been appointed to both the Order of British Columbia (1993) and the Order of Canada (2020).
Face to Face Media
Face to Face Media is a Vancouver-based production company founded by Gary Marcuse in 1986 that specializes in documentaries for public broadcast and educational video collections for professional development and classroom use. Marcuse and Face to Face Media producer Betsy Carson have collaborated with Wánosts’a7 on a number of projects including First Nations, The Circle Unbroken (1991-1997), a collection of short documentaries of Indigenous stories with the National Film Board of Canada; The Mind of a Child (1995), the award-winning documentary which examines the lasting impact of the residential schools on generations of children and Wánosts’a7’s search for better teaching methods for children of all cultures who have been affected by racism and poverty; and Pride and Prejudice: The road to multiculturalism and human rights in British Columbia (1999).
The Lorna Wánosts’a7 Williams Face to Face Media Collection at the University of Victoria offers a selection of over 20 hours of audiovisual material created during production of the documentary The Mind of a Child and related projects. The material centres on Wánosts’a7’s involvement with the production and includes interviews, presentations, roundtables discussions, and additional material shot on site in British Columbia and Israel.
Additional material pertaining to Israeli psychologist Reuven Feuerstein’s involvement with The Mind of a Child is available from the University of Victoria Special Collections by request as part of the larger Face to Face Media fonds.
Digitization was funded in collaboration with Face to Face Media, the Feuerstein Institute, and the Steven Spielberg Jewish Film Archive at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Additional material available from UVic Libraries:
First Nations the circle unbroken National Film Board of Canada, 7 videocassettes, Call Number: E78 C2F55
The Mind of a Child National Film Board of Canada, 1 videocassette, Call Number: LC4015 M56
The Mind of a Child National Film Board of Canada, Digital video
Photo credit: Gary Marcuse
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