From the Ashes book coverThis program will be postponed due to our efforts to minimize the possible spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) through social distancing.

Chatham-Kent Health Alliance (CKHA) and Chatham-Kent Public Library (CKPL) are pleased to welcome Jesse Thistle, Indigenous Scholar and Author of "From the Ashes: My Story of Being Métis, Homeless and Finding My Way" to Chatham-Kent on a future date to be determined.

Hailing from Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, Mr. Thistle is Métis-Cree and an Assistant Professor (probationary lecturer) in Métis Studies at York University in Toronto, where he currently lives. He won a Governor General’s Academic Medal in 2016 and is a Pierre Elliot Trudeau Scholar and a Vanier Scholar. In his debut memoir "From the Ashes", Mr. Thistle chronicles his life on the streets and how he overcame trauma and addiction to discover the truth about who he is. "From the Ashes" is a 2020 finalist in the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s (CBC) Canada Reads program where celebrities champion books through live shows until a single title is chosen as the book to read across the country this year.

“We are thrilled to welcome Jesse Thistle to CKHA. It’s not every day we receive the opportunity to speak with and learn from a scholar such as Mr. Thistle,” said Lori Marshall, President and CEO, CKHA. “Our staff, physicians and volunteers are very appreciative of the chance to discuss indigenous health care with one of Canada’s rising Indigenous scholars. Furthermore, it’s a significant stepping stone for us as an organization as we continue to enhance our practices in regards to the Indigenous populations we serve.”

CKHA’s staff book club, CKHA Reads, will host a discussion along with a question and answer period with Mr. Thistle on topics related to addiction, mental health, homelessness and indigenous health care. CKHA’s event is designed as a learning opportunity on the aforementioned topics for the organization’s staff, physicians and volunteers. 

Hosted by Chatham-Kent Public Library, Mr. Thistle will also be speaking at the Kiwanis Theatre, 75 William St. North, in Chatham. This event is free and open to the public. "From the Ashes" will be available for purchase at the evening event. It is also available to borrow from any library branch with your library card. Light refreshments and cash bar will be on offer at this event. 

“CKPL is pleased to partner with CKHA in bringing award winning author Jesse Thistle to the Chatham-Kent Public Library. Mr. Thistle is writing on a topic that resonates with many people across CK. His story is one of hope and inspiration,” said Tania Sharpe, Chief Executive Officer and Chief Librarian of CKPL.