Submitted by: Richard Cuddy, Credit River Métis Council President

Healing blanket
Richard Cuddy, MNO Credit River Métis
Council President, and his group showcase
their healing blanket.

Below is the first-hand account of Richard Cuddy, MNO Credit River Métis Council (CRMC) President’s participation in a training session on violence against aboriginal women:

On August 21, 2014, I took part in a full day of training on violence against aboriginal women. This training session was hosted by the MNO Healing and Wellness Branch as part of the MNO Annual General Assembly 2014 in Thunder Bay. During the training, I was fortunate to be in a group with five remarkable young Métis ladies for a session to make a healing blanket.

The healing blanket was created using the ‘tie blanket making’ technique. The session started by writing words of strength and healing on the inside of the blanket. The side that had the words on it was then turned to the inside and the blanket was tied together. Before the last knot was tied, cedar, sage, sweet grass, and tobacco were placed inside the blanket.

Once all of the blankets were finished, they were all collected at the front. One representative from each group, which happened to be me, then stood in a circle and was randomly given a blanket. A ceremony then took place to activate the medicine that we had placed inside the blankets. The blankets were then randomly passed out to each group, and by complete chance, our group ended up with the very same blanket that we had made. Our group was amazed at the odds of this happening—obviously it was meant to be!

The healing blanket symbolizes the healing process by wrapping strength, support and comfort around a victim. It will remain at the MNO CRMC office ready for whoever may need it.