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Pictures | Thu Feb 15, 2018 | 5:32pm EST

Canada's indigenous warriors fight for their culture

Members of the First Nation Indigenous Warriors (FNIW) patrol Winnipeg's North End in Manitoba, Canada. The FNIW was formed in early 2017 in the North End neighborhood of Winnipeg, Canada, where much of the city's indigenous population lives. It has become one of the city's most active warrior groups. 

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Members of the First Nation Indigenous Warriors (FNIW) patrol Winnipeg's North End in Manitoba, Canada. The FNIW was formed in early 2017 in the North End neighborhood of Winnipeg, Canada, where much of the city's indigenous population lives. It has...more

Members of the First Nation Indigenous Warriors (FNIW) patrol Winnipeg's North End in Manitoba, Canada. The FNIW was formed in early 2017 in the North End neighborhood of Winnipeg, Canada, where much of the city's indigenous population lives. It has become one of the city's most active warrior groups. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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A member of the American Indian Movement (AIM) patrols the Main Street drag in Winnipeg. AIM and the First Nations Indigenous Warriors patrol the area together on weekends in the hopes that their presence will prevent crime and inspire others in the community to join them.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

A member of the American Indian Movement (AIM) patrols the Main Street drag in Winnipeg. AIM and the First Nations Indigenous Warriors patrol the area together on weekends in the hopes that their presence will prevent crime and inspire others in the...more

A member of the American Indian Movement (AIM) patrols the Main Street drag in Winnipeg. AIM and the First Nations Indigenous Warriors patrol the area together on weekends in the hopes that their presence will prevent crime and inspire others in the community to join them. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Alex Munroe (R), one of the cofounders of the FNIW, is seen at his home in Winnipeg's North End. "We're trying to claim back our streets, our land, and we can only do that if we rise up together as a group," says Munroe. "We're not drunks, we're not drug dealers, we're not alcoholics or pill addicts. That's not who we were, that's not who we are, and that's not who we're going to be."

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Alex Munroe (R), one of the cofounders of the FNIW, is seen at his home in Winnipeg's North End. "We're trying to claim back our streets, our land, and we can only do that if we rise up together as a group," says Munroe. "We're not drunks, we're not...more

Alex Munroe (R), one of the cofounders of the FNIW, is seen at his home in Winnipeg's North End. "We're trying to claim back our streets, our land, and we can only do that if we rise up together as a group," says Munroe. "We're not drunks, we're not drug dealers, we're not alcoholics or pill addicts. That's not who we were, that's not who we are, and that's not who we're going to be." REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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People take part in a smudging ceremony organized by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors and the American Indian Movement on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. Smudging is a common practice among some indigenous peoples in North America and is believed to cleanse a person or place of negative energy.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

People take part in a smudging ceremony organized by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors and the American Indian Movement on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. Smudging is a common practice among some indigenous peoples...more

People take part in a smudging ceremony organized by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors and the American Indian Movement on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. Smudging is a common practice among some indigenous peoples in North America and is believed to cleanse a person or place of negative energy. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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People take part in a smudging ceremony organized by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors and the American Indian Movement on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. In March, FNIW and another group held protests at a downtown shopping center to try to drive out drug dealers they said had made it unsafe for families. In July, they occupied a hotel where many indigenous people from northern communities stay when they come to Winnipeg for medical treatment, after a witness gave them cellphone footage that showed a security guard assaulting a woman there.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

People take part in a smudging ceremony organized by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors and the American Indian Movement on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. In March, FNIW and another group held protests at a downtown...more

People take part in a smudging ceremony organized by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors and the American Indian Movement on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. In March, FNIW and another group held protests at a downtown shopping center to try to drive out drug dealers they said had made it unsafe for families. In July, they occupied a hotel where many indigenous people from northern communities stay when they come to Winnipeg for medical treatment, after a witness gave them cellphone footage that showed a security guard assaulting a woman there. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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People take part in a smudging ceremony organized by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors and the American Indian Movement on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. "We are a small group, but people are slowly noticing the things that we are doing," says Alex Munroe. "Where there is drugs and corruption we go out and try to drive out not the people, but the corruption, try and change their attitude and the way they think. We need to become the people we were called to be, that our ancestors used to be."

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

People take part in a smudging ceremony organized by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors and the American Indian Movement on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. "We are a small group, but people are slowly noticing the...more

People take part in a smudging ceremony organized by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors and the American Indian Movement on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. "We are a small group, but people are slowly noticing the things that we are doing," says Alex Munroe. "Where there is drugs and corruption we go out and try to drive out not the people, but the corruption, try and change their attitude and the way they think. We need to become the people we were called to be, that our ancestors used to be." REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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A boy plays on a broken-down RV on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. Canada's First Nations and other indigenous people -- the Metis and Inuit -- struggle with the legacy of Canada's colonial policies, which include displacing indigenous people from their lands and trying to force "integration" upon them.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

A boy plays on a broken-down RV on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. Canada's First Nations and other indigenous people -- the Metis and Inuit -- struggle with the legacy of Canada's colonial policies, which include...more

A boy plays on a broken-down RV on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. Canada's First Nations and other indigenous people -- the Metis and Inuit -- struggle with the legacy of Canada's colonial policies, which include displacing indigenous people from their lands and trying to force "integration" upon them. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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People gather around a fire on the campground set up by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors (FNIW) and the American Indian Movement (AIM) on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. For over 130 years, Canada operated a nationwide system of residential schools for indigenous children. They were wrenched away from their families and communities, punished for speaking their own languages, and in some cases abused. Death rates at the schools were so high the government stopped keeping statistics on them. The last residential school closed in 1996.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

People gather around a fire on the campground set up by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors (FNIW) and the American Indian Movement (AIM) on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. For over 130 years, Canada operated a...more

People gather around a fire on the campground set up by the First Nations Indigenous Warriors (FNIW) and the American Indian Movement (AIM) on the Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. For over 130 years, Canada operated a nationwide system of residential schools for indigenous children. They were wrenched away from their families and communities, punished for speaking their own languages, and in some cases abused. Death rates at the schools were so high the government stopped keeping statistics on them. The last residential school closed in 1996. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Lisa Delaronde (R), one of the founders of FNIW, is seen with other warriors at her home before they head out on patrol in Winnipeg's North End. "I've witnessed a lot of crime here, a lot of drug activity, a lot of gang activity, prostitution," says Delaronde. "It's sad because I'm witnessing our youth falling through the cracks." 

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Lisa Delaronde (R), one of the founders of FNIW, is seen with other warriors at her home before they head out on patrol in Winnipeg's North End. "I've witnessed a lot of crime here, a lot of drug activity, a lot of gang activity, prostitution," says...more

Lisa Delaronde (R), one of the founders of FNIW, is seen with other warriors at her home before they head out on patrol in Winnipeg's North End. "I've witnessed a lot of crime here, a lot of drug activity, a lot of gang activity, prostitution," says Delaronde. "It's sad because I'm witnessing our youth falling through the cracks." REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Joe Whitehawk (L) and Lloyd Shingoose are seen at their home in Cote First Nation, where their sister died from an overdose a few months ago, in Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. In rural northern areas of Manitoba and neighboring Saskatchewan, First Nations communities are challenged not just by opioid drug use and violence, but by an epidemic of suicides. 

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Joe Whitehawk (L) and Lloyd Shingoose are seen at their home in Cote First Nation, where their sister died from an overdose a few months ago, in Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. In rural northern areas of Manitoba and...more

Joe Whitehawk (L) and Lloyd Shingoose are seen at their home in Cote First Nation, where their sister died from an overdose a few months ago, in Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. In rural northern areas of Manitoba and neighboring Saskatchewan, First Nations communities are challenged not just by opioid drug use and violence, but by an epidemic of suicides. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Denby Shingoose (L), founder of the Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, holds a flag as Stanley Cote, another founder, sits beside him in Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. "Our people are killing themselves, and we have to step up and try to stop that," says Cote, a member of FNIW who has lived in both Winnipeg and Cote First Nation in Saskatchewan. "I was in the village, on Cote First Nation, when my 12-year-old niece hung (sic) herself one morning." In response, Cote founded the Youth Warrior Society.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Denby Shingoose (L), founder of the Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, holds a flag as Stanley Cote, another founder, sits beside him in Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. "Our people are killing themselves, and we...more

Denby Shingoose (L), founder of the Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, holds a flag as Stanley Cote, another founder, sits beside him in Cote First Nation, near the town of Kamsack, Saskatchewan. "Our people are killing themselves, and we have to step up and try to stop that," says Cote, a member of FNIW who has lived in both Winnipeg and Cote First Nation in Saskatchewan. "I was in the village, on Cote First Nation, when my 12-year-old niece hung (sic) herself one morning." In response, Cote founded the Youth Warrior Society. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Children from the Cote First Nation sit at the campground set up by the the FNIW and the AIM on the Cote First Nation. Troy Keshane, 21, joined the Youth Warrior Society after meeting members of FNIW while they were patrolling in Winnipeg one night. "In my life I've lost seven friends," he says. "I had one friend, Austin Keshane, he went and done himself in. Went and killed himself. I look out past the back of my yard, where he done himself in in the valley, and I think of him sometimes."

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Children from the Cote First Nation sit at the campground set up by the the FNIW and the AIM on the Cote First Nation. Troy Keshane, 21, joined the Youth Warrior Society after meeting members of FNIW while they were patrolling in Winnipeg one night....more

Children from the Cote First Nation sit at the campground set up by the the FNIW and the AIM on the Cote First Nation. Troy Keshane, 21, joined the Youth Warrior Society after meeting members of FNIW while they were patrolling in Winnipeg one night. "In my life I've lost seven friends," he says. "I had one friend, Austin Keshane, he went and done himself in. Went and killed himself. I look out past the back of my yard, where he done himself in in the valley, and I think of him sometimes." REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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People gather on the campground set up by the FNIW and the AIM on the Cote First Nation. "We're seeing a transformation happening as indigenous peoples become aware of their culture, aware of their history," says Jim Silver, a professor of urban and inner cities studies at the University of Winnipeg. "I believe there is a cultural revival happening, a resurgence, within the inner city and particularly in the North End, and it's very exciting."

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

People gather on the campground set up by the FNIW and the AIM on the Cote First Nation. "We're seeing a transformation happening as indigenous peoples become aware of their culture, aware of their history," says Jim Silver, a professor of urban and...more

People gather on the campground set up by the FNIW and the AIM on the Cote First Nation. "We're seeing a transformation happening as indigenous peoples become aware of their culture, aware of their history," says Jim Silver, a professor of urban and inner cities studies at the University of Winnipeg. "I believe there is a cultural revival happening, a resurgence, within the inner city and particularly in the North End, and it's very exciting." REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Members of the FNIW set up a tent at their campground in Cote First Nation.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Members of the FNIW set up a tent at their campground in Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Members of the FNIW set up a tent at their campground in Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Thomas Whitehawk of the Cote First Nation participates in a drumming circle at the campground in Cote First Nation.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Thomas Whitehawk of the Cote First Nation participates in a drumming circle at the campground in Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Thomas Whitehawk of the Cote First Nation participates in a drumming circle at the campground in Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Lawrence Quezance of the Cote First Nation fights back tears as he talks about his opiate addiction and recent HIV diagnosis at the campground set up by the FNIW and the AIM on Cote First Nation.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Lawrence Quezance of the Cote First Nation fights back tears as he talks about his opiate addiction and recent HIV diagnosis at the campground set up by the FNIW and the AIM on Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Lawrence Quezance of the Cote First Nation fights back tears as he talks about his opiate addiction and recent HIV diagnosis at the campground set up by the FNIW and the AIM on Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Trey Delaronde (front), a member of the First Nation Indigenous Warriors, has his hair braided by his girlfriend, Bethany Jenelle, a member of the American Indian Movement, on the Cote First Nation.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Trey Delaronde (front), a member of the First Nation Indigenous Warriors, has his hair braided by his girlfriend, Bethany Jenelle, a member of the American Indian Movement, on the Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Trey Delaronde (front), a member of the First Nation Indigenous Warriors, has his hair braided by his girlfriend, Bethany Jenelle, a member of the American Indian Movement, on the Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Trey Delaronde kisses his girlfriend Bethany Jenelle.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Trey Delaronde kisses his girlfriend Bethany Jenelle. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Trey Delaronde kisses his girlfriend Bethany Jenelle. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Tron Friday, 21, of the Cote First Nation, looks for crayfish. In recent years Tron has lost several friends to either suicide or drug and alcohol related deaths. He knew nothing of the First Nations Indigenous Warriors but decided to become a member of their newly established youth group after meeting them while they were on patrol in the community. 

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Tron Friday, 21, of the Cote First Nation, looks for crayfish. In recent years Tron has lost several friends to either suicide or drug and alcohol related deaths. He knew nothing of the First Nations Indigenous Warriors but decided to become a member...more

Tron Friday, 21, of the Cote First Nation, looks for crayfish. In recent years Tron has lost several friends to either suicide or drug and alcohol related deaths. He knew nothing of the First Nations Indigenous Warriors but decided to become a member of their newly established youth group after meeting them while they were on patrol in the community. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Tron Friday rests by a bonfire on Cote First Nation.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Tron Friday rests by a bonfire on Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Tron Friday rests by a bonfire on Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Stanley Cote, founder of the Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, stands outside his mother's house on the Cote First Nation Reserve. "All these suicides are going on in our community, these overdoses, these murders. Everyone seems to be turning a blind eye to the situation these youth are facing. They have no support systems. Our people are killing themselves and we have to step up and try to stop that," said Cote.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Stanley Cote, founder of the Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, stands outside his mother's house on the Cote First Nation Reserve. "All these suicides are going on in our community, these overdoses, these murders. Everyone seems to be...more

Stanley Cote, founder of the Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, stands outside his mother's house on the Cote First Nation Reserve. "All these suicides are going on in our community, these overdoses, these murders. Everyone seems to be turning a blind eye to the situation these youth are facing. They have no support systems. Our people are killing themselves and we have to step up and try to stop that," said Cote. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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A passerby watches as Stanley Cote talks to his audience on Facebook Live while he patrols Cote First Nation.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

A passerby watches as Stanley Cote talks to his audience on Facebook Live while he patrols Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

A passerby watches as Stanley Cote talks to his audience on Facebook Live while he patrols Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Stanley Cote (back), founder of the Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, performs a smudging ceremony on Laverne Quezance on the campground in Cote First Nation.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Stanley Cote (back), founder of the Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, performs a smudging ceremony on Laverne Quezance on the campground in Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Stanley Cote (back), founder of the Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, performs a smudging ceremony on Laverne Quezance on the campground in Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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An abandoned barn stands on Cote First Nation.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

An abandoned barn stands on Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

An abandoned barn stands on Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Vernon Musqua of the Cote First Nation poses for a photograph inside his car.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Vernon Musqua of the Cote First Nation poses for a photograph inside his car. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Vernon Musqua of the Cote First Nation poses for a photograph inside his car. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Boarded-up houses stand on the Cote First Nation.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Boarded-up houses stand on the Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Boarded-up houses stand on the Cote First Nation. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Melvin Moar, a member of the American Indian Movement, smokes just before heading out on patrol with other members of the AIM and the FNIW in Winnipeg.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Melvin Moar, a member of the American Indian Movement, smokes just before heading out on patrol with other members of the AIM and the FNIW in Winnipeg. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Melvin Moar, a member of the American Indian Movement, smokes just before heading out on patrol with other members of the AIM and the FNIW in Winnipeg. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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Stanley Cote, a member of the First Nation Indigenous Warriors and founder of Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, patrols the Parker Wetlands in Winnipeg.

REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Stanley Cote, a member of the First Nation Indigenous Warriors and founder of Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, patrols the Parker Wetlands in Winnipeg. REUTERS/Zachary Prong

Stanley Cote, a member of the First Nation Indigenous Warriors and founder of Indigenous Warriors: A Youth Warrior Society, patrols the Parker Wetlands in Winnipeg. REUTERS/Zachary Prong
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