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6th Annual Kemosa Scholarship Winners Announced

Winners of the 6th Annual Kemosa Scholarship for First Nations, Métis and Inuit Mothers Who Write

The Writers’ Guild of Alberta and Nhung Tran-Davies are pleased to announce the winners of the 6th Annual Kemosa Scholarship for First Nations, Métis and Inuit Mothers Who Write.

First established in 2017 by Dr. Nhung Tran-Davies in partnership with Tlicho Dene author Richard Van Camp, the Kemosa Scholarship offers an opportunity for First Nations, Métis and Inuit Mothers to obtain resources to help them complete the work on their writing – whether that be a novel, a collection of stories, poems, or whatever form their writing might take.

This year, there were many amazing entries for the Kemosa Scholarship, and it was a challenge for the judges to choose the winners from among them. After much thought and careful deliberation, here are this year’s recipients, along with comments from this year’s jury:

First Place ($3000):  Falon Fayant – Shadow of the Moon

        “Epic storytelling! The writing is riveting. I love it. More! More!”

Second Place ($2000): Josephine Small – Eagles Songs R Me

        “I feel we are witnessing a visionary finding their voice.”

Third Place($1000): Brittney Whitford –A Day at A Time

        “This writing is soaked in pain. Thank goodness writing is sometimes the best therapy
        there is.”

For more information or media inquiries, please contact the Writers’ Guild of Alberta at [email protected].

Meet the Winners!

Falon Fayant – First Place

Falon Fayant is a Metis writer from Redwater, Alberta. She lives with her boyfriend, four children, two dogs, two cats, and as many books as she can fit inside the house. In March 2022, ECW Press chose her young adult fantasy novel “Shadow of the Moon” for the short-list of their Best New Speculative Fiction Contest. “Shadow of the Moon” also made the short-list for the Canadian Society of Children’s Authors, Illustrators, and Performers Writing for Children Competition in 2017. Her creative non-fiction essay
appeared on the short-list for the Writers’ Guild of Alberta’s Jon Whyte Memorial Essay Award in 2019. She is working on her Creative Writing Certificate from the University of Calgary Continuing Education program.

Josephine Small – Second Place

Ms. Josephine Small is a proud First Nation member of the Ermineskin Cree Tribe is Maskwacis, Alberta where she resides. Her first language is Cree which she speaks and writes fluently. Most of her academic teaching career has been focussed on teaching Cree. She feels blessed to have grown up in an era where Cree was the only language spoken in the homes and in the community. Josephine is the 4 the oldest of 12 children born to James and Kathleen Small. She had 1 daughter and has 2 surviving sons. She has seven masters, not degrees, but grandchildren. Currently Josephine is employed off reserve at Wolf Creek Public Schools in Ponoka, Alberta as the First Nation Learning Support Coach. She feels that her Cree language, traditional upbringing, active participation in ceremony and culture, being a day school survivor, and just being a strong, resilient, Cree woman, all contribute to her being able to walk and work in both worlds with confidence.

Brittany Whitford – Third Place

Tansi Nitsikason Brittany Whitford,

Kinanâskomitin (I am grateful) to be selected as the 3rd place winner for the Kemosa Scholarship! I am a single mother to 3 children and the daughter of a residential school survivor and a now deceased 60s scoop survivor. My background is in social work-specifically helping our vulnerable Indigenous youth and adult populations. The work I do is centered on Indigenous ways of knowing coming from a place of compassion and empathy because I try to “be who I needed when I was younger”. My main motivation is standing up for what is right and never being afraid to speak the truth! Tapwe

Our Gratitude



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