TVO on the Road: Thunder Bay

The Agenda is one of the most thought-provoking programs available to TV (and internet) audiences who are intrigued by compelling topics and lively discussions.  Proudly Canadian, The Agenda is produced by TVO, serving our Nations viewers with relevant material that addresses today’s concerns and curiosities.

What a thrill to discover that TVO was taking the show on the road, and two episodes of The Agenda would be filmed in Thunder Bay!  The city is just over an hour’s drive away, so it was an easy decision to plan a weekend around such an exciting event.

Saturday’s topic of Race Relations provided a wonderful opportunity for audience members to benefit from dialogue that challenged stereotypes and assumptions as well as the state of relations between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people in our area.  Some of the issues and comments were understandably uncomfortable, because race relations is an incredibly sensitive matter.  It isn’t always easy to talk about a topic that can spark controversy because there are so many aspects to consider.  It can feel overwhelming to begin traveling down the road to a better understanding of these issues, but we have to start somewhere.  Thankfully, The Agenda provided several opportunities for this journey to begin and continue.


I was mesmerized by those who spoke with such courage and conviction at yesterday’s filming.  A handful of women captured my interest because they have dedicated themselves to creating projects that serve to help others understand issues surrounding social concerns, prompting us to replace flawed conceptions with healthier perspectives.

Samantha Crowe spoke of her experiences, her concerns for friends and family who face difficulties because of stereotypes, and solutions for youth who are willing to discuss methods to resolve problems.  Take the opportunity to learn about Feathers of Hope on Facebook.

FOH checking out @TheAgenda On The Road! Community discussion regarding race relations within Thunder Bay.

Michelle Derosier is an award-winning filmmaker who was one of three panel guests from yesterday’s discussion.  Her work on the Walk A Mile Film Project was profiled for the audience, providing us with a glimpse into her artistic vision, which helps to shed light on personal stories of struggle, survival and hope.

Walk-A-Mile Film Project Trailer from Thunderstone Pictures on Vimeo.

Several people spoke of the impact of Walking With Our Sisters, a “commemorative art installation to honour the lives of missing and murdered Indigenous Women of Canada and the United States; to acknowledge the grief and torment families of these women continue to suffer; and to raise awareness of this issue and create opportunity for broad community-based dialogue on the issue.” (source: Walking With Our Sisters) 

I can’t wait to find out more about each of these wonderful projects, to help provide more opportunities for my students to learn about diversity and new perspectives.

On another note, I was absolutely thrilled to meet Steve Paikin, host of The Agenda.  His work has already had an impact on my students, and I wanted to be sure to thank him properly.  What better way than to offer some of the best cuisine in Thunder Bay?  🙂


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16 Responses to TVO on the Road: Thunder Bay

  1. billy R says:

    I chose to look at the walk-a-mile film project and I though that what they did was amazing and the end objective was something that a lot of people wouldn’t give a second thought about before watching this film. It is also something that is a part of me and it always will be a part of me.

    • colleenkr says:

      Billy, isn’t it interesting to discover projects like Walk-A-Mile? There are wonderful people in our communities who really work hard to make positive changes. I’m so glad that you are able to benefit from the project in a personal way.

    • colleenkr says:

      Chelsey, I’m glad that you asked your readers how they would feel if they were the victims of stereotyping. It is an unfortunate reality that some people are oblivious to its effects, because they haven’t experienced it.

  2. I chose the Walking With Our Sisters project and I think it’s a great way to raise awareness for the increasing number of missing and murdered Aboriginal women in Canada and the United States. Not only is the installation beautiful but the symbolism of the installation is great.

    • colleenkr says:

      It really does help us begin to realize how horrible this situation is, doesn’t it? You’re right, the symbolism is so meaningful, and invites viewers to empathize with those who have been affected by these awful events. Can you think of ways to help them share their message?

  3. I chose to do the Walk A Mile project. Here is my blog link for more information.

    • colleenkr says:

      Kayla, you have made such a meaningful connection with Michelle’s work. I’m so glad that you realized how much courage it takes to create a project like this, because you are using the same form of media to express your own concerns. Isn’t it encouraging to see other people who are courageously using art to make positive changes in the world?

  4. Brittany Bianco says:

    On my blog I made a response to the Walking With Our Sisters project, the link is:

    • colleenkr says:

      Brittany, I really appreciate your observation that this project has drawn people together across our country. What an inspirational thought, and how hopeful. This project can help restore our faith in others, by seeing their dedication over a number of years.

  5. Erik Salmon says:

    For my response I did a blog post with the link below.

    • colleenkr says:

      Erik, your comparison between the work of Michelle Derosier and Chimamanda Adichie’s talk is intriguing. I think what I appreciate most, are their abilities to “set us straight”. Their stories help to clarify the truth amidst the fog of traditional misconceptions.

  6. Steve Paikin says:

    This is a truly beautiful blogpost Colleen. And man, are you talented! Text, video, pictures, all embedded, professionally laid out. Congratulations. And thanks for helping make our trip to Thunder Bay so memorable.

    • colleenkr says:

      Steve, you are very kind, thank you. This blog is a wonderful way to present a wide assortment of information that works well together, and it’s so much fun to find methods to do it effectively.
      I’m so glad that TVO was able to come up to Thunder Bay to film episodes for The Agenda. I know that my students were happy to discover that these issues were being discussed on the show, and it certainly gave us an opportunity to extend the conversation through our blogs (some students provided links in the comments above).
      Thank you so much for leaving a comment!

  7. Pingback: This Week in Ontario Edublogs | doug — off the record

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