Born... Anna-Maria Everett was born on November 1, 1982 in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Parents... Anna-Maria’s father, Orval Garry Everett came from a big family of 14 children and grew up in Berens River. He and his siblings were part of the residential school system of those days. As an adult Orval worked for the Berens River Airport. He met Joan Frances Torgerson when she moved up to Berens to work as a nurse. Frances was of Dutch descent but was born Saskatchewan but spent most of her youth raised in Winnipeg.
Siblings…Frances and Orval married and settled in Berens River. The couple had a set of twins (Rachelle and David) followed by Anna-Maria who was born two and a half years later. The Everett family moved briefly to Winnipeg, Manitoba before settling southeast of St. Anne, Manitoba when Anna-Maria was four years old. Later on they brought another child, Tara, into their lives through adoption.
Early Years…Anna-Maria’s early years were spent playing freely in the great outdoors with her siblings and friends. It was here that she first discovered a sense of freedom to explore and to engage in new challenges…anticipating them rather than fearing them. This approach to challenges has become an integral part of her character.
Political Beginnings… Anna-Maria’s political interest was activated at an early age by the injustices she saw around her. She had a keen sense of the unfairness that entitlement for some and neglect of others could cause.
Growing up as a young high school student Anna-Maria suffered an acute identity crisis…not sure if she was white, Native or Metis. Then during the flood of ’97 things were made clear. There was a reserve that was temporarily re-located in St. Anne. While the people of a reserve were there Anna-Maria’s (so-called) friends at the time were making fun of the Native people saying, ‘All Indians are drunks, dirty and good for nothing!’
When it was time for everyone to go back to the reserve, the Native people held a pow wow in honour of the town for letting them stay there. After the pow wow the Native children handed out dream catchers even to the ones who had ridiculed them. It was then that Anna-Maria realized they had been making the dream catchers while they were being ridiculed.
At this point she realized who she wanted to be and she was glad that these Indian people were a part of her. They taught her that even through persecution and being defamed you can still show kindness and love for those who persecute you because that’s really who you are and not who they think you are.
The Power of Love…Anna-Maria learned an equally valuable lesson about the power of love through her Oma, Elly Krulder (her grandmother on her mother’s side). Oma was born in Holland and began her nursing career there. It was as a nurse that she met Amos Torgerson, a young soldier stationed in Holland during World War II.
Amos’ own father was born in Norway but had come to Canada much earlier to farm in Saskatchewan. After the war, Amos came back to Canada with Elly and the couple ultimately settled in Winnipeg to raise their family.
It was while she was a nurse during the Second World War that Elly took part in the underground rebellion which served in hiding the Jewish people from the Nazis. Like many others, Oma risked her life for the existing minority of the time. To Anna-Maria it was courageous to risk your own life or to give up your own life for that of others when you could simply just walk away.
It is why today, Anna-Maria sees those that suffer in Canada and cannot turn a blind eye toward them. She could simply ignore them but chooses to do what it takes to make a difference in the lives of those who are unhappy which are now the majority.
Post-secondary Experiences…These were varied but Anna-Maria was always drawn primarily to helping others. After finishing high school Amy trained to become a paramedic. This was one way she felt she could help others. However, she found that being female and working as a paramedic was tough because she faced on-going sexism and gender-bias. She also witnessed a lack of love and true caring for the patients.
It was then that she understood that truly helping someone is not just about restoring health or bandaging wounds. It is really all about making people happy by giving them the care, love and respect they so hungered for.
Anna-Maria also worked as a lifeguard on the beaches of Manitoba and in Norway House during the York Boat Days. And while training to become a paramedic she supported herself as a nanny in Winnipeg. After she had completed her paramedic training she did her practicum in Cross Lake.
Greatest Influence…This influence came from the Spirit of the Mission of the Shroud through its then director, Roger F. Poisson. She first went to the Mission and met Roger in the year 2000 just before her grade 12 grad. The seeds of Love that were planted in her heart at that time were not lost but stayed with her for a year and a half until 2002 when she again returned.
During those one and a half years Anna-Maria went through many trials of her own doing and others. When she turned eighteen she went to bars, drank and got into drugs, parties and boyfriends. All these experiences led to heartache and heartbreak…one after the other.
And it was on New Year’s Eve (2001) and New Year’s Day (2002) when her eyes were opened to the Truth about her life. This is when Anna-Maria started working as a nanny while going to paramedic school in Winnipeg. It is at this time of her life that she started going to the Mission more often and eventually moving in. There she found healing and discovered who she was by the teachings of the Mission.
She began going to conferences as part of the Mission and spoke at the gatherings about her own life sharing the things she went through and how she was helped. She shared her life openly for parents to have a deeper understanding of what their own children were going through and for the youth to know they were not alone, to feel what it was like to finally be understood and to believe that things could change.
Both parents and children were shown the power of open dialogue and sharing as a prerequisite for healing to begin. Anna-Maria, herself was beginning to learn more about the pains and struggles of others and how love and genuine caring can change someone’s life.
She witnessed many people turning their lives around because someone told them, ‘I love you!’ and truly meant it from the heart. She was learning to do the same and the feeling inside her that ‘love from the heart makes all the difference in the world’ took firm root. Since then Anna-Maria has offered her life and her heart in service to others.
In its outreach to others the Mission dealt with the frailties, the sorrows and anger as well as the longing of people for a better world. Whether it was the prison system, the justice system, child and family services, the welfare system, reserves, residential schools, the church and other entities all fell short of serving those they were created to serve. Anna-Maria witnessed the errors, the blindness and even at times the lies of all parties involved. Again, her eyes were being opened and she was being prepared her for her future role with the PPP.
The People’s Political Power…Anna-Maria began volunteering within the People’s Political Power in 2004 holding many support positions throughout the last seven years and she has always been a willing worker and co-worker. It can very well be said of her, ‘No job is too small’ and her dependability could always be counted on.
We are excited to have Anna-Maria as our new leader. We know this leader will lead by example to serve others first because you are that important to us and we ask you, the family of Canada to join us, the PPP family in making Canada a better place for all now and in the Future where all our shared Dreams for Peace and Love are realized through the mutual Respect of all peoples be they French, Chinese, Indian, Muslim or White.
Solutions…Given all the problems and situations Anna-Maria has seen, she has also witnessed that there is a solution for every problem…where all sides can win benefitting everyone and Future generations as well.
It is this possibility, knowing that people can change that gives Anna-Maria the Wisdom, the courage and the strength to continue…until all are reached.
A few words from Anna-Maria herself…‘I want success and happiness for all people, not just the few people that I have met. What we do is for the whole of Canada and the whole world because I know it is possible.
Love and respect can truly change hearts and it only has to start with one. Then others will follow until all have reached the ultimate goal of Peace throughout the whole world.
To the Youth and young at heart, I give you my life. You hold great power in your heart and always persevere. Always respect yourselves and never give in to the pressures of the world because that is why the world is the way it is today. Stand up for what is right and never think it is too late to change because then you have unknowingly made it impossible for others to do the same. When you look at the world today you may say, ‘What will we have to inherit?’ Then start now to make your voices heard. I want Canada and the world to be a beautiful place that you will be able to call ‘home’. I love you all.
To our Elders, I respect you and love you. You have given up your lives for us and suffered doing so. Now we must carry on the work. Help the young by being examples and admitting mistakes done. I asked an elder once “How do you know so much?” He replied “I have had a lifelong of mistakes to learn from.” Encourage us to be strong and guide us in the direction that will lead us to a better world. Do not be distraught when we the young make mistakes but help us by encouraging us to do better next time, for there will be a next time. Canada will become a better home for all of you, full of respect and dignity which you so deserve.
And to all Canadians, I love you all, whether you are White, Black, Native, Oriental, if you were born here or immigrated here, I love you all and give my whole life for you to make Canada and the world a place in which all are respected and cared for. Do not think that this is impossible because I believe it to be because it only starts with one, then two, then three, and so on until it reaches you, which it has already since you are reading this.
This is what the PPP family represents and it is what we all live here every day. It is not merely words. It is Truth…real and honest. So let’s work together because all things are possible when you love. I give you my life and I’ll never stop until all are happy…including you.’
P.S. Please call, write or drop in anytime. You are the reason of our being here.
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