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TALA TOOTOOSIS

A motivational speaker who has been on an amazing journey to find herself and share the message as she goes along for the past 14 years! She struggled with a hardcore addiction to crystal meth, crack-cocaine and drinking for too long, and when she quit, she wanted to share how it happened and what helps her to stay sober! A single mother of three, Tala has been all over Canada telling her story - from reserves, to schools, to frontline workers at huge conferences about addictions and recovery. She comes with an amazing story that helps those who listen to understand the hope that was instilled in her throughout all the mentors in her recovery journey.

Her first time speaking was to elders at a cultural gathering where her grandmother told her to stand up and share in order to heal. In 2013 she graduated from the First Nations University with her degree in Indigenous Social Work, was nominated and named CBCs Top Future 40 Under 40 in 2013. She still continues to find ways to show others who were where she used to be, how to change and find hope in life and in culture. In her spare time, she dances Old-style Jingle, makes ribbon skirts, beads and quills, to help her as she calls it, “Indian therapy”. Tala is also part of the Indigenous Poets Society, a spoken word group who perform all over Canada.

Tala’s hope is that one day she will be able to give to others what was given to her when she first recovered, to show people that it doesn’t matter what you go through, there is always a way out, life can always change. After all the only thing consistent in this world, is change. In the words of Wallace Blackelk, “we are not in this work to make people feel worthless, we are in this work to make people feel worth it.”

Check out some eye-opening media coverage of Tala at Eagle Feather News, Anishinabek News, CBC News, and YouTube