The second volume of a book series, Dene Strong, is launching on May 10. The collaborative book was created with the help of more than 20 Indigenous People of all ages from the La Loche area. 

Dene Strong aims to celebrate the Indigenous People of northern Saskatchewan by sharing stories about courage, resilience, and wisdom.  

“Publishing these books is really important for all Canadians. First, other people in Canada need to know about our Dene approach of life, our resilience, courage, and our sense of humor too. Next, it is important for all Indigenous People to take pride in their heritage, Indigenous People have a lot to offer the world,” explained Shane Janvier.  

Janvier is the project manager for Dene Strong and works as the land, language, culture coordinator at the Dene High School in La Loche. Janvier launched the Dene Strong Project in 2022, with the help of Mary-Anne Neal, who is the project director. 

“These books will benefit youth by increasing pride in their identity, the books also preserve our Dene history and way of life, future generations will learn about our Dene life by reading these books, we are hoping to keep our Dene heritage for as many generations as possible, “said Janvier.  

Principal of the Dene High School in La Loche, Donna Janvier, has supported the project every step of the way saying it raises academic standards, instills pride, and builds leadership capacity. 

The book will be released at a launch celebration on May 10 from 2p.m. to 4p.m. on the field beside the Dene High school in La Loche. The launch will celebrate everyone who contributed to the book and the people featured in the stories. 

The ceremony will begin with speeches from invited guests, followed by cultural demonstrations, including an opening prayer by Toni Lemaigre and a community feast. 

The books will be available to purchase for $15, and those who live outside of the community can contact the Dene High School in La Loche to purchase one.