By: RJ Roggeveen, Program Assistant for Keknu’tmasiek Welo’ltimk and Therapeutic Recreation student at Dalhousie, and Ann (Annjij) LaBillois, Elder in Residence and student at Dalhousie
Welcome Ann (Annjij) LaBillois our newest Elder in Residence here at Dalhousie! The Elders in Residence program is part of the Human Right and Equity Services office under Dr. Theresa Rajack-Talley. Ann is connected to the health faculties and works closely with Keknu’tmasiek Welo’ltimk – We Learn Healing.
Ann is here to support Indigenous students at Dalhousie through 1-1 meetings, smudging, offering opening prayers, and more. Ann is from Ugpi’ganjig (Eel River Bar) in New Brunswick, she grew up in Boston, Massachusetts, has 3 children and 3 grandchildren. Ann worked as an addiction counselor for 12 years, at the Eel River Bar Health Center and has 25 years of sobriety. Ann also has a certification in MBSR (Mindful Based Stress Reduction) through the University of Massachusetts. Embracing her life journey, she has gained an understanding of the continuing ripple effects of colonialism. Ann’s experience with the impact of residential schools was lived through her father, Issac LaBillois, who had lived in the school for 7 years. Ann understands that feeling of losing one’s connection to self, the earth, our culture and with Creator. Today Ann has a passion to share the gifts that have helped her to heal.
Ann is also a Dalhousie student currently realizing her dream of being a university student from a young age and finally being here. Ann has expressed that through sharing our experiences we can help and support each other through the self-discovery process that university can be. Ann is extremely approachable and ready to support students through whatever they are going through.
Ann’s goal for this year is to make sure students know she is here, available to meet on-campus or virtually. She is here to help students process their feelings, find their strengths, and succeed at any goals they have. If you wish to connect with Ann you can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org, she is available to meet Monday to Friday for the month of May.
To learn more about Keknu’tmasiek Welo’ltimk – We Learn Healing and the resources available to Indigenous students please visit our website.