Canada Council and me….

It’s been a crazy couple of weeks since the phone call from my “fan”. Last week I wrote about what had happened and the coward who attempted to scare me with his less than humanly kind comments about my writing. He had called from a blocked number and though he told me he was with the Canada Council, he refused to give me his name. Within a short time of posting this on here I received a reply from the public relations manager (you can see her comment in the previous blog entry). I had already sent a letter to the theatre officer. The next day I received a phone call from the theatre officer. I was glad to hear that they had taken this incident seriously and she assured me there was no way the phone call would have originated from anyone connected with the Canada Council. I believed her. I had posted about my application with Canada Council on social media – including a post when I was upset about not receiving a grant. I had also sent quite a large docket of information to several government institutions and individuals across Canada in hopes of bringing awareness to the issue of abuse in private schools after the residential schools had been shut down. My concern was that there has been no investigation into where the abusers went after they were no longer in the residential schools – they were placed all over – in schools across North America – this led to the people who were my abusers as a child. This kind of reporting or recording of their movements across the educational system has not been investigated wholly. Further complicating the issue is the ease of which pedophile priests were able to change their names – for example it would be easy for father Ignatious to become father Paul, etc – this quick clerical name change and shuffle from school to school provides an excellent cloak of invisibility allowing the perpetrator to carry on indulging in his or her sick game of hunting their prey. My information (including the play itself) went to several places – any of which could have had an individual take the action of calling me to share their disgust.

I had a very good conversation with the theatre officer, and we discussed ways in which I can make future applications stronger. It was comforting to hear that the Canada Council actually does care about process, and about impersonators who are too cowardly to come forward on their own accord.

I am carrying on – moving forward with this important piece of theatre. Though I admit I am a bit shaken by that call, I am not deterred from moving forward. Thanks to the Canada Council (and in particular Lise Ann) for calling me to put my concerns at ease.

Next week I will share a letter I just received from the Premier of British Columbia about my story……

Very odd occurance

A few weeks ago I received a letter from the Canada Council denying my project funding – it didn’t meet the criteria and competition is very stiff for these things. It was also a few weeks ago that I sent out a number of letters with my story attached in hopes of raising awareness for the abuse that continued in private schools after the residential schools had closed. No one has really discussed where the abusers in the residential schools went. They were shuffled around North America to wreak havoc on more innocent children such as myself. Anyway, I received a very disturbing phone call last week from a blocked number. The person on the other end was an irate male claiming to be a representative of the Canada Council. He refused to give me his name but was very forthcoming with insults to me about my writing. He called me a pornographer – and that my writing was pornographic and that I should not be allowed access to any kind of money for what it is. He was insulted by my “rape fantasy” as he called it. It really made me sick inside and he was quick to hang up – hiding behind his anonymity.

I am prepared for this – I know there may be others who are too cowardly to discuss their concerns openly and without the protection of being anonymous. I really hope he was not a member of the Canada Council – and because he called from a blocked number and refused to give me his name, I am pretty sure it was not legitimately from them. It would be wrong for me to say I am not frightened by it – that call scared me. But it also demonstrates how afraid people are to come forward, or to hear about the effects of the abuse on victims. I am by no means a “pornographer” – my ambition is to protect children and to help through my story. I have to deal with what happened to me every day. My writing is graphic and perhaps shocking. It is time for people to take their blinders off and listen to those who have been abused. The world may be a better place for it.

I know that I will likely never apply to the Canada Council again. Their letter of rejection hurt me. If I am to raise funds for this, I will face the struggle alone – hopefully assistance will come bit by bit. The story is much too important to be shelved.

A 2015 update on Unleashing the Jedi Within

It has been a few years since I posted the original paper on this site. Since then I have been working on developing my research into a live presentation. Though it has been decades since the abuse occurred, I still live with it each day. Much like the Force, the effects of the abuse sometimes influence me to feel hatred, anger, fear, and aggression. There has been an awakening in me for some time – I have known that there is much more work to be done. I really feel that my story may help others dealing with the resonance of abuse and acceptance.

Recently I applied to the Canada Council in hopes that I would be granted funding to develop my story. I was angered when they rejected my application. Momentarily I felt like I wanted to give up – just throw away the research and the development I have been working towards with the help of my colleagues Ken, Valerie and Jerry. It was a fleeting moment of despair and anguish. I am slowly picking myself back up and will be working towards other funding means. I will be working towards private funding and hopefully I will be able to continue to move forwards towards production.

Illustration by Elyse

In short, I don’t want to give up. I want to continue to share and to inspire others. I don’t want to silence my past as some others would like me to do. I want to move forward with the courage of the Jedi – and, so help me, I will see this through.