It happened by accident, but Bob Joseph created a career out of educating Canadian settler society on how to better relate with Aboriginal Peoples.
As an indigenous person from the Gwawaenuk Nation, Bob was asked if he would lead a presentation for BC Hydro employees at a time when he worked for the hydro company on Canada’s west coast. This spurred a 20-year journey leading workshops with people from government, organizations and industry — which has not always been an easy task. Bob has fielded uncomfortable, controversial and even offensive questions along the way.
Despite this, Bob thrives in his work by keeping some guiding principles in mind: “Nelson Mandela said that if you speak to a person in your voice, they listen. But if you speak to a person in their voice, then it goes to their heart. Learning those little nuggets along the way has really helped me,” he says.
Inter-disciplinary professional practice firm Urban Systems recently published a question and answer series that highlights some of the emerging trends, challenges and strengths emerging in Bob’s work.
Check them out here:
1. Bridging the gap to work effectively with Indigenous peoples
2. The Equality Principle: A barrier to understanding Aboriginal Peoples
3. Fielding uncomfortable questions in Aboriginal relations
A version of this article was originally written for the Urban Systems news service. This repost, for which we received permission, follows the style guidelines of the original post. To learn more about generative newsroom options for your organization or community, please contact peter(at)axiomnews.ca.