Soldier heads east to take posting as Aboriginal Advisor

Sgt Moogly Tetrault-Hamel brings the Canadian Armed Forces Eagle Staff ashore during a ceremony on Esquimalt Nations territory, Aug. 19, 2015. Photo by Peter Mallett, Lookout

Sgt Moogly Tetrault-Hamel brings the Canadian Armed Forces Eagle Staff ashore during a ceremony on Esquimalt Nations territory, Aug. 19, 2015. Photo by Peter Mallett, Lookout

Peter Mallett, Staff Writer ~

Throughout his 15-year military career, Sgt Moogly Tetrault-Hamel has helped strengthen ties and build a greater understanding of Aboriginal issues for Canadian Armed Forces and DND personnel at CFB Esquimalt.

Now he’s headed to the Nation’s Capital to take the role of Aboriginal Advisor, helping establish proper guidance and direction in regards to Aboriginal spirituality.

In this new role, the Abenaki First Nations soldier from 39 Canadian Brigade Group will share his cultural knowledge on a national level so chaplain services
can better serve Aboriginal personnel.

Since much of Aboriginal cultural knowledge comes from oral teachings and personal experiences, Sgt Tetrault-Hamel says he has the tools to build that greater understanding.

“This acknowledgement is a huge step forward for all of our Indigenous cultural backgrounds. Aboriginal Canadians, Metis, First Nations and Inuit have wide ranges of Indigenous ways, and I hope to entitle our ways with proper support.”

At CFB Esquimalt, he served on the Defence Aboriginal Advisory Group (DAAG) as the Regional Military Co-Chair for British Columbia. DAAG advises military leadership on significant issues and trends affecting the role and quality of life of Aboriginal people serving in DND and the Canadian Armed Forces.

His involvement in DAAG began when he first joined the CAF as a supply technician in 2001. Subsequently he became involved with the Raven Program in 2003 and was DAAG Regional Military Chair for Alberta between 2010 and 2013, before taking on a similar position in British Columbia in 2013.

“Following his years of outstanding support to the MARPAC DAAG, Sgt Tetrault-Hamel’s appointment as the Aboriginal Advisor to the Royal Canadian Chaplain Service is richly deserved,” said Base Commander, Capt(N) Steve Waddell. “I know he will continue to bring forward the same level of cultural teachings, awareness and passion that we benefitted from at MARPAC. Bravo Zulu.”

Some of his priorities at the new post are a review of policies and manuals to better include aspects of Aboriginal spiritual support; the creation of more complete National Elders contact list; helping move the CAF towards expanding and improving existing multi-faith centres to support Aboriginal religiosity and spirituality; and improving training of Chaplains on Aboriginal cultural awareness.

“To fill this humbling position is not the end of the journey but the beginning,” said Sgt Tetrault-Hamel. “I will have the greatest honour to truly make a difference for our Aboriginal soldiers who practice our Indigenous ways.”

Filed Under: Top Stories

About the Author: The Lookout Newspaper can trace its history back to April 1943 when CFB Esquimalt’s first newspaper was published. Since then, Lookout has grown into the award winning source for Pacific Navy News. Leading the way towards interactive social media reach, we are a community resource newspaper growing a world wide audience.

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