Thelma Nabigon

Thelma Nabigon (Present-day Speaker of Biigtigong Nishnaabemwin)

Thelma Nabigon generously gives of her time in helping our community. She understands the importance of community and the importance of everyone making contributions. Thelma loves being a member of Biigtigong Nishnaabeg and this pride resonates in the very essence of her being.

Thelma loves her family and takes the responsibility of her role as mother, grandmother, and aunt very seriously. Being extremely active and present in the lives of her children and grandchildren, she is able to guide and instill in them a strong sense of identity. As she values the importance of community to our way of life and ensures members of her family share this value. Thelma actively engages in building strong relationships with family, community, and the universe. She understands that all life is inter-connected and inter-dependent and as such our relationships are important.

Zhwenmaawso Thelma (she loves children). Thelma recognises the importance of language in raising strong, healthy Nishnaabe children. She loves seeing the world through the lenses of Nishnaabemwin and advocates this wonderfulness for our children. Both she and Lambert were concerned that we were no longer raising any understanders or speakers of our language. They understood the profound losses that came with the loss of our language. Together, she and Lambert set out to learn how to successfully pass on our language; their immersion story begins.

Jiibaakwe Thelma (she cooks). Thelma shares her love and prayers in the making of every dish she prepares and shares. She recognizes the spiritual connection in our relationship with food. Thelma teaches us the importance of feasting and making food offerings as a central value to our Nishnaabe being. As preparers of food, our role is a spiritual role, in that we understand we are feeding our spirit, and the spirit of our ancestors. She models this very important aspect of our worldview and reminds us that our relationship with food is not only about physical sustenance, but also of spiritual sustenance.