In discussions with community elders and knowledge keepers, Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB) staff identified an area of opportunity: for our Indigenous students to further see themselves reflected in our schools, and be inspired by positive role models. From this, the idea for the Heroes: Indigenous Role Models series was born. The series of comic books, videos and posters highlights the stories, successes and life experiences of a variety of individuals with First Nation, Métis or Inuit heritage. It focuses on strong, resilient and positive Indigenous role models from different communities and highlights their lives, cultures and languages.
The resources were launched in SCDSB schools with a world premiere event showcasing the videos, comics and posters. Special screenings were held for students and staff during the day, with a public event in the evening which was attended by some of the heroes and the artists who created the comics. Since then, the resources have been distributed and used throughout the SCDSB, with the intention for the series to grow to include more Indigenous heroes over time.
To honour 2019 as the United Nations Year of Indigenous languages, each comic book was printed in English and the corresponding Indigenous language. The resources were produced through the support of the SCDSB to be used in our schools, and beyond, to benefit all of our students.