Activism – Purifying Water
2023, Senior, Performing Arts
Climate Hero: Autumn Peltier, Wiikwemkoong First Nation
I demonstrate the storyline of a community’s relationship with water to represent the Climate Hero I chose, Autumn Peltier. Peltier is a Canadian indigenous teen-activist fighting for the preservation and protection of clean water for all, especially Indigenous groups. Peltier describes her view of water as interconnected with her culture, explaining the ties between her people’s traditions and the water they live by. I represented her love for and relationship with water in the first section of my dance. Peltier also describes her surprise at the inequality of water cleanliness that indigenous communities such as her own face. She advocates for clean water as a universal right and against water pollution, which often as a result of industrialization and pipelines affects lower-income and indigenous groups inequitably. I demonstrate the pollution of the water caused by irresponsible policymaking in the second section of my routine, highlighting the inevitable damage water inflicts on humans in return - causing contaminations, infections and diseases. Finally, the last section of my dance represents activist-led change, purifying the water once more. Autumn Peltier has spoken at the Assembly of First Nations, the United Nations General Assembly, and the United Nations Global Landscapes Forum, as well as received nominations for the International Children’s Peace Prize three times. Her international and widespread influence inspires and empowers people around the world to take action and advocate for cleaner, safer water for all. This is symbolized through the dance as the hand lifting the water up, purifying it and returning it to its former, pure state. Autumn Peltier’s actions in raising awareness for the prevention of water pollution can lead our global community to do more for this cause and, through our collective effort, return our waters to their former beauty.